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There have been widespread calls for athletes to boycott the Beijing 2022 Winter Olympic games next February, due to the human rights abuses in Xi Jinping’s China.
Now, however there’s movement ramping up that’s instead aiming to move the Winter Olympics 2022 – with Canada’s name being pushed to the top of the list, perhaps sharing the games with its neighbours to the south, the USA. With just less than a year to go until the official start date, the debate over the decision to move the games is now really starting to ramp up – but there are several big questions hanging over the debate. Ultimately, the most difficult task will be persuading the Olympic Committee to reverse its 2015 decision to award the games to Beijing, effectively at the 11th hour as far as Olympic preparations go.
If the Winter Olympics are to be moved so late in the day, they would need to go to a place with ready-to-go infrastructure, and nowhere in the world has that better than The Great White North. Canada has hosted the winter Olympics twice in recent living memory – Calgary in 1988, and, most recently, in Vancouver in 2010. Additionally Montreal also hosted the Summer Olympic Games in 1976. Added to that, the burden could be shared with the neighbouring US, which has itself hosted the Winter Olympics on no less than four occasions.
Canada the First to Host the Games as a Country
With both the summer and winter Olympics, the games are traditionally held in a host city, rather than a country as a whole. This would most likely differ were Canada to take over the Olympic torch so late in the day, as they would likely spread the load across multiple locations due to a lack of preparation time – perhaps utilising some US locations as well. As this debate is only just beginning to gain serious traction, it’s unclear what route they would go down in terms of branding. Would they attribute the games to a single city, such as Vancouver once again, or could we see Canada 2022 branding – which would be a historic first.
What if the Games are Boycotted or Cancelled?
Another plausible scenario is that a widespread agreement to boycott the Beijing Winter Olympic results in an event that’s vastly reduced in stature or even cancelled. Should the games be cancelled, it would be the first time either the winter or summer Olympic Games would be cancelled since WWII.
So will we be witnessing the Canada 2022 Winter Olympics this time next year? We’ll be the first to let you know here at PlayersBest!