The #FörFramtiden boycott has been underway for over a month now, but with no resolution yet in sight, the Swedish Ice Hockey Association (SIF) has chosen to pull the plug on the Four Nations tournament scheduled for early November.
”Having to cancel the tournament in Luleå feels very sad,” said Secretary General Tommy Boustedt in the SIF’s press release on Sept. 13.
What’s sad is that the Damkronorna had to strike for things like properly-fitting clothes and nutritional supplements that didn’t expire months ago, but I digress.
The news comes a day after the Damkronorna refused to sign the SIF’s latest contract proposal. Negotiations between the SIF and the players’ union SICO have been ongoing despite a telling six-day public silence from SIF Chairman Anders Larsson after news of the strike broke.
According to the SIF’s press release, they chose to cancel after asking players if they’d participate in the tournament even if no agreement was yet signed. No big deal, cross their own picket line, scab on themselves.
To the surprise of no one except perhaps the SIF, the players declined, and now the whole thing is off. Despite the SIF pointing to Canada, the United States, and Finland needing time to plan their travel to Luleå, there’s no reason why the tournament couldn’t revert to its original three-nation structure should the boycott continue into November. Yes, it does take time to plan international travel, but it also takes time to coordinate a compatible international playing schedule. The SIF’s tactic reeks of a bully taking their toys and stomping off home, shouting a few guilt-trip zingers behind them as they go.
Whether the cancellation is permanent, where Four Nations will be played, and how long the Damkronorna boycott will go on have yet to be seen.