NHL commissioner Gary Bettman revealed this week there won't be a World Cup of Hockey in February 2021.
Speaking at the league's board of governors satisfying in Pebble Beach, Calif., Bettman said there isn't enough time to plan the occasion.
"We're all in agreement that restoring the World Cup regularly would be an excellent thing," Bettman told reporters. "That's something we're having extremely serious, specific conversations about with the (NHL) Players' Association on."
But when the subject rapidly turned to the Olympics-- an international occasion the NHL has next to no control over at this point compared to a league-run World Cup-- the commissioner was singing a different tune.
"The Olympics is a different problem," Bettman added. "The league's view is it's disruptive to a season. We understand the importance to the players, however there are an entire host of things that are unsettled, including who would spend for involvement and what rights we get to promote ourselves.
"That's something that isn't on the exact same track, in my view, as the World Cup."
The NHL went to the Olympics five times in between 1998 to 2014, but avoided the 2018 Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, and might effectively do the exact same for the 2022 edition in Beijing.
The league ran its most current World Cup in the fall of 2016 and was wishing to hold another tournament in place of the 2021 all-star video game. But with those plans are now shelved, the next opportunity for a best-on-best showcase will be sometime throughout the 2021-22 project.
A variety of prominent NHLers were asked before the season where international play ranks for them in terms of value.
Simply put, the consensus was World Cups are nice, but the Olympics are much better.
"It's actually important for our game to be represented at the Olympics," said Chicago Blackhawks captain Jonathan Toews, who won gold with Canada in both 2010 and 2014. "If you're half-reasonable, everybody can confess the same thing. It's good for our game. The Olympics is a big, substantial phase that the whole world is viewing. You saw what it provided for our video game when the U.S. and Canada fulfilled in the final in North America in 2010.
"(I'm) not saying it's constantly going to exercise perfectly like that, but it's constantly a win for our game."
Detroit Red Wings centre Dylan Larkin said it would be a "dream come to life" to play for the U.S. at a Games.
"I take great pride in representing my country," he stated. "Watching the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, that game against Canada gives me chills simply speaking about it.
"I would do anything to be on that team. It grows the video game and a crucial part of the Olympics are ice hockey when NHL gamers become part of it. It would be terrific to continue that trend."
St. Louis Blues sniper Vladimir Tarasenko would have to play under a neutral flag if the NHL goes to the 2022 Games after Russia's current four-year ban by the World Anti-Doping Agency, but he said back in the fall there's absolutely nothing like the Olympics.
"It's really, truly important," Tarasenko stated. "I think all Russian gamers wish to go there, and I bet you other players from other teams wish to go. That's why we're playing, to be one of the finest.
"I hope they will make a good choice. Once in four years, (The Olympics are). They're discussing the World Cup, (but) they must discuss Olympics more."
The World Cup in 2016 included a Team Europe made up of players from smaller hockey nations and Team North America, which was peppered with the continent's top skill aged 23 and under.
Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar dressed for Team Europe, which made the final versus Canada, however stated his experience at the 2014 Games betting Slovenia was a various level.
"Olympics are Olympics. I 'd like to be a part of it once again," he said. "If you wish to grow the video game, being part of the Olympics is a big thing."