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Daly: no ‘contingency plans’ for Olympic boycott (which let’s be honest won’t happen anyway)

Jul 17, 2013, 2:24 PM EDT

Edward Snowden Getty Images

We hesitate to even mention Republican senator Lindsey Graham’s comments on a potential boycott of the 2014 Winter Olympics in Russia, if only because a boycott is such a miniscule possibility. However, since NHL deputy commissioner Bill Daly has responded to the story, we suppose we should pass it along.

Via NBC News, here’s what started all this talk:

A key U.S. senator has told NBC News that the United States should consider boycotting the upcoming Winter Games if Russian President Vladimir Putin grants leaker Edward Snowden asylum — even suggesting that Putin’s actions should raise the specter of the pre-World War II Berlin games hosted by Adolf Hitler’s regime.

“I love the Olympics, but I hate what the Russian government is doing throughout the world,” Sen. Lindsey Graham, R-S.C., told NBC News on Tuesday. “If they give asylum to a person who I believe has committed treason against the United States, that’s taking it to a new level.”

Per, Daly says the NHL has “no specific contingency plans” for a boycott “because it is a hypothetical situation at this point. If and when we are faced with something like that as a reality, we are certainly prepared to consider and react appropriately depending on the totality of the circumstances.”

Again, the chances of an Olympic boycott stemming from the Snowden case are tiny, if not zero. In fact, House Speaker John Boehner today flat-out rejected the suggestion.

“Why would we want to punish U.S. athletes who’ve been training for three years to compete in the Olympics over a traitor who can’t find a place to call home?” Boehner told reporters at a news conference.

The United States boycotted the 1980 Summer Olympics in Moscow, but that was over the much bigger issue of the Soviet invasion of Afghanistan. (Not to mention that whole capitalism-versus-communism thing they had going back then.)

Update: Here’s United States Olympic Committee spokesperson Patrick Sandusky:

“If there are any lessons to be learned from the American boycott of 1980, it is that Olympic boycotts do not work. Our boycott of the 1980 Olympic Games did not contribute to a successful resolution of the underlying conflict. It did, however, deprive hundreds of American athletes, all whom had completely dedicated themselves to representing our nation at the Olympic Games, of the opportunity of a lifetime. It also deprived millions of Americans of the opportunity to take pride in the achievements of our athletes, and in their dedication and commitment, at a time when we needed it most. While we acknowledge the seriousness of the issues at hand, we strongly oppose the notion that a boycott of the Olympic and Paralympic Games is in our country’s best interests.”

Related: Daly expects NHL schedule, Olympics announcement this week

  1. sjsharks66 - Jul 17, 2013 at 2:32 PM

    Lindsey Graham is an idiot. Hopefully he uses his strong love for prism and reads this.

    • micklethepickle - Jul 17, 2013 at 6:30 PM

      Well said!

  2. 950003cups - Jul 17, 2013 at 2:47 PM

    Graham is by no means an idiot. The idiot is the one currently serving in the White House as president, who is doing absolutely NOTHING to get this guy sent home. This president is viewed as a moron worldwide, and every chance a foreign country has, they embarrass him publicly.

    I think you have no clue how dangerous Snowden’s threats really are. Mr Obama needs to get this guy fast. The only people who Obama is a hero to are the foolish libs who are hell bent on destroying the constitution.

    If Snowden gets assylum, and endangers the USA, we have a huge problem. Obama is mum on the issue, but he had no problems getting his flapping his big mouth about Trayvon before he had a clue what happened.

    Let the CIA get this guy, and impeach Obama by the morning.

    • gooterbaby - Jul 17, 2013 at 2:55 PM

      This reply should give a fairly accurate demographic of what political party readers prefer. (Thumbs up=Republicans Thumbs down=Democrats.)

      • micklethepickle - Jul 17, 2013 at 6:33 PM

        There is little to no difference between the Republicrats and Demicans – Obama is actually bombing more countries than Bush did, and the murder of innocents has continued unabated. Did Guantanamo close? How about repealing, or at the least not RENEWING the Patriot Act? Repealing Don’t Ask Don’t Tell took the Supreme Court, not Obama. We have a 2 party system where both parties serve the rich at the expense of the middle and working classes.

      • nothanksimdriving123 - Jul 17, 2013 at 8:54 PM

        Mickle fact check: President Obama pushed the repeal of Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell through Congress (days before the House went Tea Party) and gladly signed it into law, opening our military to gays. He also refused to defend the Defense of Marriage Act in the courts (to which the Tea Party House leaders responded by spending our tax money on defending it) and cheered when the Supreme Court overturned it. It’s my understanding the Congress will not allow him to close Gitmo, and his suggestion that our US courts can handle trying terror cases, including in NYC, met with major GOP whining. I won’t argue he’s anywhere close to perfect, but he’s easily the best president of this century.

      • micklethepickle - Jul 17, 2013 at 9:33 PM

        Actually, if you go back and look at the timeline, a Federal Appeals Court struck down DADT, and Obama sent the Solicitor General into court to appeal their decision and reinstate DADT… until he repealed it right before, as you mentioned, election time. Here’s a link – – so NO, he only is for gay rights when it is politically expedient.

        And your argument about Guantanomo doesn’t fly when you consider that Obama uses executive privilege to order the execution of American citizens without due process. So he can do THAT, but closing Guantanomo is outside his power? Sorry, I don’t buy it. He’s as much a snake as Bush Jr., AND Clinton for that matter. Sad state of affairs when the U.S. public elects presidents of supposedly opposite political ideologies and they carry out the exact same policies.

    • goalieguy37 - Jul 17, 2013 at 3:00 PM

      go home Tim Thomas, you’re drunk.

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2013 at 3:09 PM

        How’s that “Hope and Change” thing working out?

    • capitals13 - Jul 17, 2013 at 3:40 PM

      I’ve lived in foreign countries and know diplomats from all over the world. Bush absolutely destroyed our international reputation. Obama is repairing it. He is highly respected across the world and Romney was a joke in their eyes. You don’t know what your talking about clearly.

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2013 at 3:51 PM

        I’ve lived in more foreign countries than you. I can assure you that Obama is viewed as weak, and Biden is laughable in their eyes. So, you sir don’t know what you are talking about.

        Now zip your lip you lying sack of crap

      • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2013 at 3:55 PM

        You libs still holding on to the “Blame Bush” strategy? LOL

      • capitals13 - Jul 17, 2013 at 11:59 PM

        I’m not holding on to a blame Bush strategy, I’m holding on to what I’ve been told by foreign diplomats. Bush did give us a reputation as gun-slinging cowboys and the entire world laughs at us. Obama has given us some respectability. Romney was not well respected in the international community that I was involved in, so electing him would have made no difference. Although, I will agree with what you say about Biden. And no need to call me a lying sack of crap. You could simply show some respect in a debate.

    • 950003cups - Jul 17, 2013 at 6:41 PM

      micklethepickle actually gets it.

  3. 950003cups - Jul 17, 2013 at 2:49 PM

    As far an an Olympic boycott….

    Keep politics out of sports. NO BOYCOTT

  4. sjsharks66 - Jul 17, 2013 at 3:14 PM

    Personally I hate all politics. The agenda is already made. They just need a face and a voice to put it in motion.

  5. fivetozeroingame7 - Jul 17, 2013 at 4:07 PM

    Everyone knows that Snowden is a patriot. Only loser Capitals fans think otherwise.

    • micklethepickle - Jul 17, 2013 at 6:35 PM

      Not all of us! Snow den should be flying home to a parade and the Medal of Freedom. Go Caps!

      • fivetozeroingame7 - Jul 17, 2013 at 9:26 PM

        You melted this troll’s heart.

  6. pone27 - Jul 17, 2013 at 4:35 PM

    Again, the chances of an Olympic boycott stemming from the Snowden case are tiny, if not zero. In fact, House Speaker John Boehner today flat-out rejected the suggestion.

    Sums it up.

  7. ibieiniid - Jul 17, 2013 at 4:37 PM

    hockey fans should stfu about politics. i’ve seen better conversation in the Fox News comments… and they don’t even have a comment section!

    • comeonnowguys - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:03 AM

      Comments sections allow for links to fact checking sites. :)

      • ibieiniid - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:11 AM

        lol. you should check out this site:
        it was silent for a while because fox news shut down their comment sections, but apparently they’re baaaaaaaaaack!

      • ibieiniid - Jul 19, 2013 at 9:12 AM

        frankly, some of those are downright infuriating that we have to live amongst these pieces of racist trash.

  8. ibieiniid - Jul 17, 2013 at 4:38 PM

    also, get this guy’s stupid face of my screen. sick of seeing his little nerd head. looks like he should be at a Hoobastank concert.

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