Bettman: World Cup Of Hockey Not Replacing '21 NHL All-Star Game
It appears the NHL "wants to have another World Cup tournament as soon as possible," but the chances of holding it in place of the '21 All-Star Game "have been scrapped," according to Michael Traikos of the TORONTO SUN. NHL Commissioner Gary Bettman said, "It's too big of an event to do in that short of a time frame." But before any World Cup decisions are made, the NHL and the NHLPA "have to decide whether or not to participate" in the '22 Beijing Games. Bettman: "We're all in agreement that bringing back the World Cup would be a good thing and that's something that we're having serious discussions with the Players' Association on. The Olympics is a different issue. ... It's something that's not on the same track as the World Cup." Meanwhile, Traikos notes regarding the NHL All-Star Game, it "sounds like the league is considering a change in the format to reflect the international calendar." One idea is a "Ryder Cup type of format that features a 3-on-3 tournament with players representing their country of origin rather than their division" (TORONTO SUN, 12/11). SPORTSNET.ca's Chris Johnston cited sources as saying that the NHL and NHLPA are "now focused on trying to organize a full-scale World Cup tournament that includes play-ins and a proper leadup" in '24 and '28. The NHL "last staged a World Cup" in September '16 and "originally tried to plan a follow-up" for September '20 (SPORTSNET.ca, 12/10).