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NHL could reconsider sending players to Sochi if 'something significant' happens

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The NHL will reconsider sending players to the Olympics due to safety concerns if something significant happens before Feb. 9.

Richard Heathcote

As the start of the 2014 Winter Olympics draws near, the NHL will reconsider sending its players to Sochi if "something significant" happens before Feb. 9, deputy commissioner Bill Daly told the Associated Press on Monday.

Security concerns have been growing ahead of the Games and many athletes, including NHL players who will be taking part, have told their families to avoid going to Sochi.

"As of now, we do not doubt that all necessary steps are being taken by the Sochi Organizing Committee, the Russian government and the IOC to ensure the safety of the athletes and guests in Sochi," Daly told the AP in an email on Monday. "Obviously, if something significant were to transpire between now and Feb. 9 that causes us to question that conclusion, we will re-evaluate. I don’t expect that that will become necessary."

Minnesota Wild defenseman Ryan Suter, who will be representing the United States, told his family, including his father and member of the 1980 "Miracle on Ice" team, Bob Suter, to skip the games.

The Associated Press also spoke with the NHLPA, which echoed the league's sentiments.

The hockey tournament will begin on Feb. 12.

NHL players have been participating in the Olympics since the 1998 Games in Nagano, Japan.

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