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NHLPA wants a Canada-Russia series — but will it happen?

Sep 14, 2012, 6:06 PM EDT

ovechkincrosbyhandshake AP

Nobody knows when the 2012-13 NHL campaign will start, or if it’ll start at all.

In light of that, the NHLPA is cooking something up that might intrigue hockey fans during the lockout.

According to the Toronto Star, the union wants to hold a multi-game series between the best players that Canada and Russia has to offer. The NHLPA has already reached out to Hockey Canada in the hopes of holding preliminary discussions.

It’s an interesting idea, though the union still needs to answer a number of questions about the event — primarily, which Canadian broadcaster would air the games?

CBC and TSN already have NHL deals while Sportsnet enjoys regional TV agreements with the league. Several senior broadcast officials said that none of them want to do anything to potentially hurt their relationship with the league, according to the Star.

“You think CBC wants to do anything right now to upset the NHL?” one media executive told the Star. “No way. They’re trying desperately to hold onto their contract with the NHL.”

On top of that, Bell and Rogers — the owners of TSN and Sportsnet respectively — are the co-owners of the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Aside from the broadcast issue lies the potential for injuries. Players who participate in this tournament might jeopardize their NHL deals should they get hurt. The NHLPA has already warned the players about that possibility should they choose to play in Europe, and a recent post from ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun noted that “if a player is injured while playing in another league during the lockout, an NHL club can suspend him without pay until he is fit to play.”

The NHL players can purchase insurance coverage, but that could cost them something in the ballpark of $35,000 per $1 million in coverage.

So those hoping for a new Summit Series featuring Sidney Crosby and Alex Ovechkin shouldn’t get too excited yet.

The idea is out there, but it’s far from a sure thing.

  1. id4joey - Sep 14, 2012 at 7:46 PM

    Who will pay the players? How much will they be paid? Will they have insurance to cover them in case of a career ending injury? Not sure this is a good idea for players or owners.

  2. ryanw822 - Sep 14, 2012 at 11:13 PM

    Ugh. Why must people try to recreate the magic of past events? What’s next, a remake of The Karate Kid??

    • ravenscaps48 - Sep 14, 2012 at 11:43 PM

      Ha! That’s funny because it already happened!

  3. polegojim - Sep 14, 2012 at 11:34 PM

    Russia??? Canada???

    Create a league of your own… in the end… mutual brag… and ZIP on a global scale!

    Wake me up when Canadian/Russian leagues even remotely come CLOSE to the NHL Stanley Cup!!!

  4. jaybertx - Sep 14, 2012 at 11:57 PM

    This is what NHL 13 is for.

  5. greatminnesotasportsmind - Sep 15, 2012 at 1:24 AM

    Why not just have a World Cup of hockey?

    USA, Canada, Sweden, Finland, Russia, Czech, Slovakia, and Switzerland

    2 groups of 4 teams

    Have a 10 game round robin. Each group plays its teams twice and plays the other group once.

    Then have a best of 3 medal round. Top seeds in each group plays the last, and the other two.

    Reseed them after the first round based on round robin points.

    Play another best of 3.

    Winners meet in a best of 5.

    Host cities: St. Paul, Toronto, Los Angeles, New York, Montreal, and Vancouver

    • freneticgarfieldfan - Sep 15, 2012 at 4:43 AM

      do you think their leagues are waiting for this to happen?
      They have their own schedule, and most of the regular seasons have already started.

    • capsrockva - Sep 15, 2012 at 11:59 AM

      I like your thinking

  6. theawesomersfranchise - Sep 15, 2012 at 1:58 AM


  7. jimw81 - Sep 15, 2012 at 3:40 AM

    NHL can easily block this in court and bettman will do this heartbeat. Plus their NHL contracts can be void. That’s why players are playing in Europe so they are protect by transfers agreements with NHL and have insurance at same time.

  8. mattmc20 - Sep 15, 2012 at 9:12 AM

    Ask ESPN to broadcast it, oh wait, they though Bettmen and his crones were a joke after the last lockout and want nothing to do with the NHL. In fact they get better ratings for college woman’s basketball than they did for NHL.

    They could ask NBC because now that they finally struck a deal with the #2 sports station the N HL has decided to F that relationship.

    Finally as a fan growing up in Michigan, I want to officially resign from being a fan for the next 5 years. Management has ruined this game and I no longer support it. I’m not buying the video game, collectables and I let the Red Wings know if there was no season there would be no further season ticket purchases. That becomes official today.

    I know no one cares but thank you for letting me rant.

  9. cheers4ablumpkin - Sep 15, 2012 at 9:44 AM

    That’s not right what about the Americans

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