The NHL has been adamant about not letting their players go to the 2018 Winter Olympics in PyeongChang, South Korea, but the AHL isn’t completely following suit.
Earlier this week it was reported that the AHL will allow their players to represent their countries this winter. Stephen Whyno reported that AHL President and CEO David Andrews confirmed the news through a league spokesman on Wednesday.
However, as of now it will only allow players on AHL contracts, not prospects or players that are on two-way deals. That might take some of the excitement away, but players on two-way deals have not been completely ruled out for the Olympic games.
Some notable players on AHL deals on the Lehigh Valley Phantoms include forwards Chris Conner and Steven Swavely. On a team potentially made up of mostly teenagers, AHL veterans could play a big role.
The AHL doesn’t have an Olympic break built into their schedule, so any Phantoms player would be missing from February 5th to 26th, with the Olympic men’s hockey tournament running from the 9th to the 25th.
It’ll be interesting to see how the NHL and AHL handle the Olympics situation as the summer progresses. More than a few players have been outspoken about wanting to play in the Olympics, including Philadelphia Flyers forward Jake Voracek. Voracek said back in March that the situation is “stupid” and “absolutely ridiculous.”
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