Mr. Trump running a leg of the Athens Games flame relay in June 2004 in New York // Getty Images

IOC

A good day for the Olympics: Mr. Bach goes to the White House

You can like Donald Trump. You can not like Donald Trump. To be clear: I did not vote for the gentleman. Whatever. When the president of the United States of America meets with the president of the International Olympic Committee at the White House, that is a good day for the Olympic movement.

Let us all understand the gravity of what happened Thursday. Put emotion aside. Think strategically. What is in the best interest of the Olympic movement, and of the IOC? Answer: having good relations with the governments of the world. Russia is a great country and a great Olympic power. China is a great country and a great Olympic power. But, people, let’s be real.

The then-Rio governor, Sergio Cabral, pitching the IOC in 2009 as part of the winning Brazilian campaign. Cabral is now sentenced to 14 years in prison for corruption // Getty Images

IOC

Once again, the Olympic disconnect

Do you want to know why nine cities have dropped out of the running for the 2022, 2024 and 2026 races for the Olympic Games?

Why only Los Angeles and Paris are left for 2024 and the International Olympic Committee is all but certain this summer to award both the 2024 and 2028 Games to those two, order yet to be determined?

That was then: ice hockey federation president Rene Fasel and NHL commissioner Gary Bettman at a news conference at the Sochi 2014 Olympics // Getty Images

IOC

NHL: Agenda 2020, drop dead

Agenda 2020, International Olympic Committee Thomas Bach’s would-be reform proposal, holds 40 points. The IOC members passed all 40, unanimously, in December 2014. Some two and a half years later, with the exception of the launch of the Olympic Channel, Agenda 2020 has proven a lot of aspirational talk and not much else.

The NHL’s decision to walk away from the 2018 Winter Games offers potent new evidence of the obvious irrelevance with which it views Agenda 2020 and, by extension, the larger Olympic enterprise. There can be no other conclusion. If Agenda 2020 held the power to effect meaningful change, what would the NHL choose when weighing this essential question: is hockey a brand or a sport?