NHL Players Reportedly Won’t Attend Olympics Amid COVID-19 Concerns

A formal announcement is expected soon


Dec 21, 2021

For days, things had been trending in the direction of NHL players not going to the 2022 Olympics.

It appears that will, indeed, be the case.

The NHL and NHLPA agreed that NHL players will not go to the Beijing Olympics, ESPN reported Tuesday, citing multiple sources.

Players had started to sour on the possibility of attending given the quarantine requirements if a player tested positive for COVID-19 at the Olympics. It would be a mandatory three-to-five-week quarantine, which would keep players away from their families and teams for important weeks of the NHL season.

The pause to NHL games currently in place amid is sharp rise in COVID cases over the last week-plus hasn’t helped the cause. Not only will that complicate the schedule for the rest of the season, but also could add some concern about the likelihood of a positive test at the Olympics — especially since it will come shortly after All-Star weekend in Las Vegas.

While the decision has not been made official, the ESPN report indicated it could be formally announced later Tuesday or Wednesday. As for who would replace NHL players on the Olympic rosters, that’s not entirely clear. In 2018, the rosters were comprised largely of players who were playing overseas.

Thumbnail photo via Andrew Nelles/USA TODAY Sports Images
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