I wrote earlier today about how much Vladimir Putin has to be hating the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang so far. But the more I think about it, the more I think Gary Bettman is going to have the worst month out of everybody in the world while the entire world tunes in to watch the Olympic hockey tournament and nobody gives a shit about the NHL. He could have allowed NHL players to participate in the games and found ways to market the league in Pyeongchang. But he’s a short-sighted buffoon and since the NHL wasn’t going to make any revenue from sending players to the Olympics, he made himself the most hated man in hockey and decided that NHL players would be forced to stay home. Fans hate him and as you can tell by this Ovi quote the players hate him as well.
Now here’s the tough situation that I find myself in currently. Alexander Ovechkin is my enemy. He’s a Russian who plays for the Washington Capitals. That makes him a direct adversary to both USA Hockey and the Philadelphia Flyers. I’m supposed to hate him with every ounce of my being. However…. the enemy of my enemy is my friend. And Gary Bettman, too, is my enemy. If Alex Ovechkin is also an enemy to Gary Bettman, does that make Ovi my friend? Despite being my enemy? It’s quite the conundrum. But I do love how outspoken Ovi has been about this whole ordeal. Credit where credit is due. Playing for the Russian National Team means absolutely everything to Russian hockey players. I know there’s a ton of pride here for guys who make Team USA. But it’s a different beast in Russia. So when you take the most important event away from Ovechkin, obviously he’s not exactly going to be thrilled.
P.S. – USA gets their tournament started tomorrow morning. Live Blog will be up around 6:45am. Rock, Flag, and Eagle.