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SBD/April 8, 2013/Leagues and Governing Bodies
NHL Nixes Premiere Games For '13-14; Talks Turn To Reviving World Cup Of Hockey
Published April 8, 2013
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MEETING OF THE MINDS: The CBC’s Glenn Healy reported the various parties involved in the negotiations to continue sending NHL players to the Olympics are meeting Friday, which is when the subject of insurance costs will be introduced. The CBC's Elliotte Friedman said he spoke to somebody in the insurance industry "and he said that we’ve never seen anything like this, nothing compared to this in hockey before, with the amount of guaranteed contracts” of the players that could play at the '14 Sochi Games. Friedman: “The bill for the entire Canadian team, not to mention the rest of the teams, is going to be enormous, and I think that’s going to be the big question.” Friedman said the players and the league “would like it to be the IOC and IIHF” paying the insurance bill for the players. Healy said it cost $580M in ‘10 “for the players in Canada." Meanwhile, Healy noted the "bigger issue for the (NHLPA) is that you’ve 700 guests of NHL players that have no transportation to the venue," and it is a "35-minute walk” to the arena ("HNIC," CBC, 4/6). YAHOO SPORTS' Nick Cotsonika noted the hang-up for the various parties "goes beyond" the insurance issue. It includes "branding and media rights for the NHL, access to venues for NHL officials and families, and transportation to and from Sochi." NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman "would not provide detail of how much progress has been made so far." He said, "There are lots of issues. This doesn’t get done until all the essential elements get done, and so it doesn’t pay to focus on any one or two issues" (SPORTS.YAHOO.com, 4/7).