Razor With an Edge: The Last Olympics

Thursday, 02.06.2014 / 5:14 PM / Razor With An Edge
By Daryl "Razor" Reaugh

"The Winter Olympics; where we learn who is best at all the A-hole rich kid sports" - Julius Sharp

This will be it. The final NHL involvement in the Winter Olympic Games. Mark my words. Why? Business, pure and simple.

Back when the NHLers first competed (Nagano, 1998) the league needed the games for exposure - global branding. That was when Wayne Gretzky was still a player and the Winter Classic had yet to become a thing. It was also when the cycle of awarded Games was about to swing through North America, twice (Salt Lake in ‘02, Vancouver ‘10).

Five Olympics and a couple of lockouts later, the NHL business model has changed, HRR (Hockey Related Revenue) is now king. Shutting down the league for 18 days doesn't produce much HRR. In reality, it costs money. And participating in Olympic Games doesn't drive revenue, nor does it develop the same level of buzz it once did.

Bottom line, the Games have probably worn out their usefulness to the league, and with major security concerns in Sochi coupled with the next Winter Olympiad set for the TV time zone hell of South Korea, the players appetite has most likely waned as well.

This is not to say that elite, NHL/NHLPA sponsored international competition is dead. Far from it. The league and the NHL Players Association just want to profit from it.

Ahhh yes, HRR.

Hence, you will be hearing more and more talk of resurrecting the Canada Cup or World Cup as a for-profit vehicle to have the best players on the planet gather and compete for world supremacy.

Meantime, enjoy the morning action from Russia's 'resort' area in what will be the most expensive Winter Olympics ever. In fact all of the previous WO combined would not equal the cost of Putin's somewhat shambolic Games.

Why so expensive? Because, according to reports, the Russian President's construction and consulting buddies 'got paid'. Which is ironic, since finance is a big reason the NHL and the players are likely to say 'nyet' to future involvement in the Winter Olympic Games.

Of course, I've been wrong before...

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WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 z - ANA 82 54 20 8 266 209 116
2 y - COL 82 52 22 8 250 220 112
3 x - STL 82 52 23 7 248 191 111
4 x - SJS 82 51 22 9 249 200 111
5 x - CHI 82 46 21 15 267 220 107
6 x - LAK 82 46 28 8 206 174 100
7 x - MIN 82 43 27 12 207 206 98
8 x - DAL 82 40 31 11 235 228 91
9 PHX 82 37 30 15 216 231 89
10 NSH 82 38 32 12 216 242 88
11 WPG 82 37 35 10 227 237 84
12 VAN 82 36 35 11 196 223 83
13 CGY 82 35 40 7 209 241 77
14 EDM 82 29 44 9 203 270 67

STATS

2013-2014 PLAYOFFS
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Benn 3 2 1 0 3
C. Sceviour 3 1 2 1 3
R. Garbutt 3 2 0 2 2
A. Chiasson 3 1 1 -3 2
T. Seguin 3 1 1 2 2
V. Nichushkin 3 1 1 1 2
S. Horcoff 3 0 2 2 2
T. Daley 3 0 2 1 2
A. Roussel 3 0 2 2 2
C. Eakin 3 0 2 0 2
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
K. Lehtonen 1 2 0 .923 2.37
 
 
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