Blackhawks News

Should NHL Players Compete In The Olympics?

By Sean Fitzgerald
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Nov 18, 2013; Pittsburgh, PA, USA; Network broadcaster Pierre McGuire (left) interviews Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Brian Gibbons (49) after Gibbons was named the first star of the game for scoring his first career NHL goal against the Anaheim Ducks during the third period at the CONSOL Energy Center. The Penguins won 3-1. Mandatory Credit: Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The Olympics take away from the NHL viewership: The NHL game has to go on a three week break to accommodate the Olympics. In the Vancouver Olympics the gap did not hurt the NHL as much because the Olympic Games were shown at times easily watchable in North America.  With Russia being hours ahead of North America, fans must get up super early to watch games or miss work to watch games. An example would be the last three USA games. They played Slovenia at 6:30am central time on Sunday morning after playing Russia the same time on Saturday. The USA defeated the Czech Republic at 12pm et. The USA versus Canada game is at 12 pm ET. Unless you are taking the day off work, have a TV in your office or are currently in college, you will not be watching the game LIVE. The jump in NHL viewership after the Olympics is not quantifiable, so we do not have hard data on it. The smart money is on the rating being negatively affected.

Remember Blackhawks fans that could have been Jonathan Toews or Patrick Kane instead of Tavares. Those are my reasons why NHL players should not be allowed to compete in the Olympics.What are your thoughts?

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