Although the next Olympics are four years away, talk has already started regarding whether or not NHL players will be allowed to participate. Speaking at the SXSW Interactive Conference (relayed by Jim Vertuno of the Associated Press), Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly acknowledged that owners may believe that “There may be more positives to participating in Beijing” compared to the most recent games in Pyeongchang, South Korea. A decision on whether or not the league will pause their season to allow NHL participation is still a few years away and as a result, it will likely be a key discussion point whenever the next round of CBA negotiations get underway.
More from around the hockey world:
- Yesterday, it was reported that the Hurricanes had asked for permission to interview Mike Futa for their now-vacant GM position. We can now add more names to the list that Carolina is interested in. Pierre LeBrun of The Athletic and TSN reports (Twitter link) that the team has asked for permission to talk to Paul Fenton (Nashville) and Julien BriseBois (Tampa Bay) as well as reaching out to former Vancouver assistant GM Laurence Gilman. TSN’s Darren Dreger adds (via Twitter) that they have also requested permission to interview Tom Fitzgerald (New Jersey).
- The Flames should get goaltender Mike Smith back for tomorrow night against the Islanders, head coach told Sportsnet’s John Shannon (Twitter link). The veteran has been out of the lineup for the last month with a groin injury and a result, Calgary has been using rookies David Rittich and Jon Gillies between the pipes and despite their best efforts, they now find themselves on the outside looking in at the postseason. If Smith is indeed activated off injured reserve, Gillies will likely be returned to Stockton of the AHL as he is currently with the team on an emergency recall.