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How the Russia/Ukraine Conflict Is Impacting Sports

Megan Solensky | Contributing Writer

The international Olympic committee has requested a cancellation of all sports events intended to be held in Russia. Volleyball, shooting, and hockey are among the sports scheduled to have championships played in the country. By invading Ukraine, Russia broke the Olympic Truce. This truce is set in place to guarantee the host of the games will not be attacked for the safety of the fans and athletes.

Figureheads from all around the world of sports have felt the impact of the Russia / Ukraine conflict, and many have stepped forward and spoke on the issue. According to Washington Post, Russian Hockey player Alex Ovechkin spoke briefly on the situation in a press conference by saying: “I am not in politics. I am an athlete, and you know, how I said, I hope everything is going to be done soon. It’s a hard situation right now for both sides and everything. Everything, I hope, is going to end. I’m not in control of this situation. . . It doesn’t matter who is in the war -- Russia, Ukraine, different countries, I think we live in a world . . . we have to live in peace.”

The two Ukrainian NBA players Alex Len center for the Sacramento Kings and Sviatoslav Mykhailiuk guard for the Toronto Raptors released a joint statement about the situation: “A great tragedy befell our dear homeland Ukraine. We categorically condemn the war. Ukraine is a peaceful, sovereign state inhabited by people who want to decide their own destiny. We pray for our families, friends, relatives and all the people who are in the territory of Ukraine. We hope for an end to this terrible war as soon as possible. Dear Fellow Ukrainians, hold on! Our strength is in unity! We are with you!”

Russian tennis player Andrey Rublev has also used his platform to speak openly and call for peace. Rublev went to the sideline after winning his match at the Dubai championships and wrote “No war please” on the lens of the broadcasters camera. Over the course of history, athletes from many different sports have used their platforms to elicit conversations going beyond their respective games. Recently, these are just some of the many examples of athletes speaking out during these uncertain times..


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