HomeNewsEventsIce HockeyNorth America

NHL looks to revive World Cup of Hockey, stage regular-season games in Russia

NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly (Credit: NHL)

The National Hockey League and the NHL Players’ Association are actively looking to revive the World Cup of Hockey, NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly has announced.

A proposed tournament in 2020 was shelved in January amid uncertainty over labor relations in the ice hockey league. But with a Collective Bargaining Agreement now firmly in place until September 2022, Daly said there is time for the next World Cup of Hockey to be planned and played.

The World Cup of Hockey, a multination tournament organized by the NHL and NHLPA, was last played in 2016 in Toronto. It was also previously staged in 1996 and 2004.

“We’re totally, 100 percent aligned with the Players’ Association on the value of that property, to growing the game and promoting the game and creating a competitive, entertaining tournament,” Daly said Oct. 4 in Prague, ahead of the 2019 NHL Global Series game between the Philadelphia Flyers and Chicago Blackhawks at the at O2 Arena. “The form that that takes and the time that that takes and the details, it’s always tough to work out the details.”

Daly added that Russia is under consideration as a possible future venue for NHL Global Series games. Several of the league’s top players were born in Russia, including Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals and Nikita Kucherov and Andrei Vasilevskiy of the Tampa Bay Lightning.

“I think it’s been speculated that, and would be rightly speculated, that we would be willing to explore putting a game in Russia, with some of our Russian stars,” Daly said. “There’s a long way between here and there. So I’m not announcing Russian games, but certainly that’s a market that we think would be interesting if we had the support of the Russian Ice Hockey Federation and the [Kontinental Hockey League] in doing it. That’s something we’d consider.”

There has been no further talks regarding the participation of NHL players in the 2022 Beijing Olympics, Daly said. The NHL opted out of allowing its stars to compete in the 2018 Games in PyeongChang, a decision that angered a number of its leading international players.