If you have paid attention to the way the NHL has scheduled this season you’ll notice some obvious changes. Beyond the fact that teams are starting a little later in October, playing well into April, and every month is packed with games. Then you take a look at February and discover there’s a huge break.
That break could mean only one thing: The NHL was going to allow their players to play the 2022 Winter Olympiad in Beijing, China.
But, this was not official until just last week. The NHL has reserved the right to opt out by early January due to Covid or if too many games need to be rescheduled due to outbreaks and those few weeks in February are needed for that.
Back in 2018, the NHL opted out of the Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. But they weren’t going to miss this opportunity seeing as they have spent many years and plenty of money trying to grow the game in one of the largest nations in the world. Sure, the KHL has a team in China but the NHL is the top tier.
It will be fun to watch Olympic hockey again. Who from the Bruins will be there? Surely Brad Marchand and Patrice Bergeron, right? Patrice has been such an important piece of that team for years now, it would be hard to not have him there. How about Taylor Hall? Current Golden Stick winner David Pastrnak has to be a lock for the Czech Republic along with now former Bruin David Krejci. Charlie McAvoy must be joining an excellent Team USA defensive corps.
Who else do we think will be there?