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Women’s hockey at risk of being dropped from the Olympics?

Apr 9, 2013, 11:54 AM EDT

Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images Andre Ringuette/HHOF-IIHF Images

The U.S. and Canada will face off in the IIHF women’s hockey world championships for the fifteenth time in fifteen tournaments. Yes, that’s all of them, prompting some to wonder if the sport might get tossed from future Olympic Games for a lack of competition from other nations.

One of those people was current IOC president Jacques Rogge, who said after the 2010 gold medal game in Vancouver (not surprisingly between the U.S. and Canada) that “we cannot continue without improvement.” But IIHF President Rene Fasel said he doesn’t think the sport is at risk:

“I don’t think there will be a problem there,” Fasel told reporters at the women’s world championship. “I cannot imagine that an IOC president would kick women’s hockey out of the program. I can’t imagine that. But you never know. They kicked wrestling out, so…”

The U.S. and Canada have also gone toe-to-toe at all but one Olympic gold medal final, which has obviously created an exciting rivalry for the bordering nations, but ruined the interest of countries like Switzerland, which lost by a combined 18-0 in their preliminary games against the two teams.

“Our goal is to be more competitive in [South] Korea in 2018,” Fasel added. “We need that time to go there.”

  1. nothanksimdriving123 - Apr 9, 2013 at 4:58 PM

    Sadly, the only real suspense in most women’s world tournaments is whether Canada or the US will win it. But it would be most unfortunate if the women and girls who play were to be penalized for the lack of progress by the sport’s leaders to grow the game in other countries. And people should bear in mind the rather farcical results of early men’s tournaments. In the 1924 Olympics, Canada outscored its opponents 110-3 (no typo); in 1928 they outscored them 38-0; in 1932 only 4 teams played in Lake Placid. This might be a marathon, not a sprint.

  2. mogogo1 - Apr 9, 2013 at 10:13 PM

    After the wrestling debacle, it’s anybody’s guess what will happen next. And, to be sure, it’ll have nothing to do with the actual sport and everything to do with who has the most influence and scratched the most backs.

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