Melnyk: NHL 'way beyond' anything to do with 2018 Olympics
There will be no last-minute agreement to send NHL players to the 2018 Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang, South Korea.
Ottawa Senators owner Eugene Melnyk made that perfectly clear on "The Naz and Wally Sports Hour" on Zoomer Radio in Toronto on Sunday, emphatically confirming that ship has sailed.
"The schedule is set. The dates are set. All of our fan appreciation days are set," Melnyk said, according to Bruce Garrioch of the Ottawa Citizen. "For (the Senators), especially, we're going to Sweden and that's set. We're going to have an outdoor game. You can't move that schedule anymore. There's 31 teams that are planning things and have planned things. We're way, way beyond anything to do with 2018. That's just not going to happen."
The NHL made a formal announcement stating its players won't be going to South Korea back in early April, and it's a door that simply can't and won't be re-opened.
"You asked me if there's any way of fixing this or doing something with this? You can't for this coming season. Absolutely not," Melnyk reiterated. "It's August. We start training camp in a month. People start coming in and then we start full play in early-October. It's actually technically impossible to do. Think of the television that's all set. There's a lot of things that have been set in motion that are pretty much irreversible."
In the players' eyes, then, this is far from a dead issue.