Having watched the winter games now completed, I have to say that the Olympics are turning really flat, and frankly, a shadow games and financial boondoggle. I say that because the games now are chock full of "paid" athletes, and in many cases outright professionals. In some sports that is huge, like say basketball, baseball, hockey, and soon golf. I'm all for "the best players in the world" being part of the Olympic experience, but it's getting plain old boring for me. Now the NHL is positioning itself to get paid more for loaning their athletes because of the risk of injury.
I love the NHL for a reason, and that is to see my favorite team win the Stanley Cup. Seeing my team broken up into 6 international teams to play a competition against one another doesn't cut it. Give me the days when true amateurs played, and won, against the best out there. Nobody can say that the 1980 hockey matches weren't the greatest ever played. My Canadian friends will say it was the 2010 games, but that was NHL North vs. NHL South. Great game and series, but still Pro's vs. Pros. How many in a case?
Explain to me how adding golf to the Olympics, and having the Tour guys playing is going to bring up the Olympic spirit. Frankly, professional golfers more embody that spirit every day than any other sport (Honesty, Integrity, Sportsmanship, etc.). We already have international competition every other year with the Ryder Cup and Presidents Cup. How is the Olympics really any different? Oh yes, a gold medal.
I think the IOC is getting a tad bit too, shall I say money grabbing with some of these moves. Call me a purist. But even laying golf aside a bit, the games are just too much of a financial shell game.
Off the soap box.....