A devastating war has been raging in Ukraine for months. The sports world has reacted by banning Russian athletes and officials from international competitions. An exception to this is tennis or the National Hockey League (NHL). Russian players are still allowed to play in the best ice hockey league in the world. Recently there was a lot of discussion about the NHL game on October 7th in Prague between the San Jose Sharks and the Nashville Predators. Russian players play in both teams.
The Czech Ministry of Foreign Affairs then wrote a letter to those responsible for the National Hockey League. It is not in the interests of the republic for players from Russia to appear in the O2 Arena in Prague. But now Russian ice hockey cracks are allowed to play.
The Russian Sports Minister Oleg Matytsin logically does not think much of sanctions against Russia in sports. He even referred to it as “suicidal for the sports world”. Russia was also stripped of hosting the 2022 Champions League final. The final of the premier class should have taken place in St. Petersburg. Instead, Paris stepped in as the venue. The 2023 Ice Hockey World Championships will not take place in Russia either, but in Finland and Latvia.
Matytsin said that Russia has hosted many sporting events in recent years. The Russian sports minister is alluding to the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi or the 2018 World Cup. “Reliable partners like Russia can be counted on one hand. We have already organized sporting events at the highest level,” emphasizes Matytsin. “The suspension can be compared to suicide. I hope sanity prevails. We will win for sure,” the politician said unequivocally.