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NHL in no rush to discuss Winter Olympic plans

Ice Hockey Gold Medal - Sweden v Canada

SOCHI, RUSSIA - FEBRUARY 23: A general view of the arena as the team’s line up to receive their medals during the Men’s Ice Hockey Gold Medal match on Day 16 of the 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics at Bolshoy Ice Dome on February 23, 2014 in Sochi, Russia. (Photo by Clive Mason/Getty Images)

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ORCHARD PARK, N.Y. (AP) — The NHL isn’t going to get drawn into any discussions about participating in future Winter Olympics until after the PyeongChang Games are complete.

Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said that’s the answer he provided to International Ice Hockey Federation general secretary Horst Lichtner on Friday.

Daly and Lichtner happened to sit together during the first period of the world junior hockey championship outdoor game between the United State and Canada being played at New Era Field.

Daly said the two talked little business, though he noted Lichtner did ask when the NHL might be ready to discuss its plans regarding the 2022 Winter Games in Beijing.

Daly said his response was: “Certainly not any time before PyeongChang.”

Citing monetary and logistical concerns, including the time difference between North America and Asia, the NHL elected against having its players compete at the Winter Games in February for the first time since 1994.

Daly said it was premature for him to publicly discuss the league’s plans regarding Beijing.

“The issues with each Olympics are different,” Daly said. “Obviously, some of the logistical difficulties we have with South Korea will be the same in China. But maybe there are some opportunities in China that aren’t in South Korea.”

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