NEW YORK —
Blackmun said he also supports the inclusion of women’s softball. Baseball and softball, which have been out of the Olympics since the 2008 Beijing Games, have merged to mount a joint bid for 2020 reinstatement. The IOC board will decide next month which sport or sports to recommend for inclusion, with a final vote by the IOC assembly in September.
“Softball needs the Olympics,” Blackmun said. “I feel strongly that both wrestling and women’s softball should be in the games. You can’t get both. It’s not a perfect world.”
Blackmun said he’s confident NHL players will take part in the 2014 Winter Games in Sochi, Russia. NHL players have participated in the past four Winter Games, shutting down the league for two weeks.
Negotiations between the league and international ice hockey officials have yet to produce an agreement for Sochi, though the signs are positive.
“I know the players want it — both the players who would go to Sochi and those that would get two weeks off,” Blackmun said.