Sport Alex Ovechkin takes shot at Gary Bettman over Olympics

18:55  14 february  2018
18:55  14 february  2018 Source:   The Sports Daily

US won't rule out Olympics talks with North Korea

  US won't rule out Olympics talks with North Korea Vice President Mike Pence or other US officials might meet with North Koreans at the Winter Olympics in Pyeongchang next week, Secretary of State Rex Tillerson said Monday. Washington has previously said it won't seek to initiate contact with North Koreans attending the South Korean games, but it does want talks with Kim Jong-Un in an effort to get him to abandon his nuclear program.Asked during a visit to Peru whether Pence might accept an invitation to meet the North Korea delegation, Tillerson – who is pushing for a diplomatic solution to the crisis – would not rule it out.

Something tells us Alex Ovechkin is still a little bitter about that. Ovechkin , who has spoken in the past about how important winning an Olympic medal would be to him, was asked on Tuesday if he has been watching the Olympics . He used the opportunity to take a shot at NHL commissioner Gary Bettman .

In his first year as NHL commissioner in 1993, Gary Bettman met with then-International Olympic Committee president Juan Antonio Samaranch to discuss NHL participation in Washington Capitals star Alex Ovechkin has taken this stance, and his team owner, Ted Leonsis, has supported him.

Alex Ovechkin in a baseball uniform© Brad Mills-USA TODAY Sports

The landscape of Olympic hockey looks a lot different in PyeongChang than it looked four years ago, and that is largely because the NHL decided it will not allow its players to compete in the Winter Games. Something tells us Alex Ovechkin is still a little bitter about that.

Ovechkin, who has spoken in the past about how important winning an Olympic medal would be to him, was asked on Tuesday if he has been watching the Olympics. He used the opportunity to take a shot at NHL commissioner Gary Bettman.

Ovechkin’s mother played basketball for Russia and won two Olympic gold medals, so you can understand why a chance to do the same means so much to him. He tried to fight the NHL’s decision last year but eventually waved the white flag.

“I wanted to make this statement so that my words are clear and nobody misunderstands what I am saying. The Olympics are in my blood and everybody knows how much I love my country,” Ovechkin said in a statement last September. “Ever since I was a kid and all the time I have played in the NHL, NHL players have played in the Olympic Games. We never have to make choice between our team and our country my whole career. I love the Capitals and my teammates here as much as I love my country and I know all the other NHL players feel the same for their teams. We should not have to be in position to make this choice.”

No one is expecting any type of “Miracle on Ice” situation with NHL players not allowed to compete in PyeongChang, but their exclusion has led to some heartwarming moments for other hockey players. That’s one silver lining Ovechkin and others can focus on.

North Korea to send high-level delegation to Olympics closing ceremony .
North Korea is sending a high-level delegation to South Korea for the Winter Olympics closing ceremony this Sunday, South Korean officials have confirmed. Kim Yong Chol, Vice Chairman of the Party Central Committee, will lead the delegation that's due to arrive by rail hours before the ceremony starts, according to a statement Thursday from the South's Ministry of Unification.Kim, will be joined by Ri Son Gwon, chairman of the "Committee for the Peaceful Reunification of the country" and six support staff.

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