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From the Branches: No-lympics?

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The league isn't booking flights to Korea just yet.

Dennis Grombkowski/Getty Images

Had enough of the Olympics? Maybe Bettman has too. There are a few snafus on the way to Pyeongchang that likely won't be addressed until the winter.

Olympics: NHL's participation in 2018 Winter Games no sure thing | CBS Sports
"To put it bluntly, the logistical challenges that exist are mountainous. A vast time difference - 13 hours ahead of Eastern Time - the physical distance for travel and a number of other factors are going to play into the league's ultimate decision."

NHL locked in stalemate with IOC over 2018 Olympics attendance | CBC
"A new wrinkle in advance of the next Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, centres around out-of-pocket payments the International Olympic Committee and International Ice Hockey Federation have covered, a practice the IOC has suggested stopping under president Thomas Bach."

Leafs News

From Katya: "Yegor Korshkov's line o'youngsters got the first regular season goal for Lokomotiv. Fantastic scene of him carrying the puck up the ice and then it's Brandon Kozun who picks it up when he's drawn too much attention in the corner and fallen down, because he's still a giraffe."

Brandon Prust: Toronto Maple Leafs need sandpaper, veteran leadership | Hot Stove
'You want to be able to keep guys in check and make sure that guys aren’t taking liberties on your top players or your young guys. I think it’s still important, but it’s definitely changed – the philosophy of the game. I still pick a fight and some people will go, "that fight was useless." But really, in my mind, I know it’s not. I know my team has lost two games in a row or three games in a row, and I’m going to start the next game with a fight because I know that it is going to get my boys going.' -- Prust.  :|

Mark Hunter’s promotion says a lot about his value to Maple Leafs | Sportsnet
'Even if Mark Hunter’s promotion to assistant general manager was viewed as nothing more than a "formality" by the Toronto Maple Leafs, that in itself provided a pretty strong statement about his place in an ever-evolving front office.'

THE LEAFS HAVE A DELICATE FRONT OFFICE SITUATION | TLN
"But I'd wager it's also to put him in the conversation for Lou's job eventually and conciliate concerns about that role being handed to Kyle Dubas." TLN WHY YOU GOTTA USE SHOUTY VOICE FOR YOUR HEADLINES.

Toronto Maple Leafs Systems Analysis – The Power Play | Hot Stove
"Today, I am going to take a deeper look at the Leafs’ power play (PP). Although they ultimately ranked 27th, I believe the units were a lot better than their ranking and that Babcock and power play coach Jim Hiller were able to put some building blocks in place for future success."

Toronto Maple Leafs: Crowded Up Front | Editor in Leaf
"The fact that the Toronto Maple Leafs have too many players to fill twelve, maybe thirteen, forward spots is probably a good problem to have."

WILL ROMAN POLAK PLAY FOR THE MARLIES THIS SEASON? | TLN
"When the Toronto Maple Leafs signed Roman Polak to a $2.25M contract last month, did they do it with the intention of having him play some or all of the 2016-17 NHL season with the Toronto Marlies?"

Weigh in on PPP's Magical Marlies Meetup over here!

Other stuff

Thorold Blackhawks face deadline to change name and logo | 610cktb
Ya think?

NHL hires gambling watchdog ahead of Las Vegas move | Chicago Tribune
V good idea.

Positional rankings: Projecting the NHL's top 25 right wingers in 2016-17 | Yahoo Hockey
"Here’s the Yahoo Sports ranking of the top 25 right wingers in the NHL for the 2016-17 season."

Wayne Moriarty: Time for the NHL to do something about all that punching in the face | The Province
"It’s stunning to me that the NHL continues to tacitly condone their assets punching each other in the face."