Original text too short.
As in Pyongyang in 2018, there are no professionals from the NHL for the Olympic Winter Games in Beijing. Leon Driest remains only a watch at the TV.
Leon Driest has dreamed of having to live Olympic winter games finally — but it will be nothing again. As in Pyeongchang, there are no ice hockey cracks from the NHL in Beijing, which announced the North American Profiling together with the NHLPA player union on Wednesday.
Driest reacted with disappointment and understanding, even because the development was foreseeable. An Olympic tournament with the best players in the world would have been something special, said the exceptional door, especially against the background that the last participation of the NHL players already traveled for eight years.
But he is sure that the national team will also play a very good tournament again without the professionals. In any case, I wish the guys much success and will push them their thumb.
We’ve been waiting for this decision as long as possible, said Commissioner Gary Batsman previously communicated that NHL had all available options checked to enable our players to participate in the Olympic Winter Games. But this is in view of the profound interruption of the main round game plan by recent events associated with Corona unfortunately no longer possible.
NHL of Corona dumbbell
Most recently, a Coronawelle was broken over the NHL, more than 130 professionals and coaches were positively tested, 50 games canceled, the Christmas interruption. The actually planned Olympia pause (6 to 22 February) should now be used to reorganize already postponed games or games that may still have to be postponed.
The decision is not surprising, the league was not a choice. Because the worst is certainly not survived in the face of the omicron variant. Bitter is still, for the fans and the players, especially for those who had never been there. Like Leon Driest, Top scorer and Forager of the League — in addition Germany’s superstar.
Of course, it’s very pity for our Germans in the NHL because they absolutely wanted to be with Olympia, said Unrestrained Toni Soderholm. The Finn, however, finds it good to have a definitive decision now to advance all our plans around the team. The German team go with self-confidence in the Olympic ice hockey tournament. With or without NHL player.
Driest was already reported in October
Driest was reported together with goalkeeper Philipp Grubber (Seattle Kraken) and Defender Moritz Safer (Detroit Red Wings) from Söderholm already registered in October for Olympia. But the Finn had always had a plan B in the drawer.
For me, it was never 100 percent clearly that the NHL plays along, Söderholm had already explained to the SID before the cancellation. Worry folds do not drive the 43-year-old to the forehead. We have enough quality playing in Europe. For him is uninteresting, whether it is an advantage or disadvantage. It can happen so much.
Due to the message, inevitably memories are awake. Even in South Korean Pyongyang, the NHL professionals had missed, then Germany was completely surprising the silver medal. The then national coach Marco Storm, today assistant coach at the Los Angeles Kings, therefore believes: Especially without the NHL players everything would be possible again.
Of course, the beautiful perspectives do not help Driest either. If the national team is targeting the next surprise, he stands in North America on the ice or looks out of afar at the screen. At the winter games 2026 in Milan and Corina d’Mezzo is Driest 30. No age for an ice hockey player, maybe it works.
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