The National Hockey League announced in September that it will not participate in the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea. The controversial decision brought an end to NHL players participation in the Olympics, which has been allowed for the past four Winter Olympic games.

While some of the most recognizable names in hockey won’t be taking the ice, Team USA is still eyeing a podium finish.

“We expect to compete for a medal, and this will be no different,” said Tony Granato, the Team USA coach for the Olympics, according to the Los Angeles Times.

The U.S. will now form a team of NCAA college athletes, and professionals competing in other leagues outside of the NHL.

The historic “Miracle on Ice” during the 1980 Olympics was the last time Team USA won gold. The team was comprised of amateur hockey players and was considered the underdog to the defending gold medalists, the Soviet Union.

In 1987, the International Olympic Committee (IOC) decided to allow professional athletes to compete. However, the first year the IOC and the NHL agreed to allow professional players to compete wasn’t until the 1998 Olympic games.

Since that …read more

Source:: Heavy.com – Sports

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