David Pastrnak takes huge dig at the NHL after winning the World Championship with Czechia; he has every right to be disappointed

Earlier this year, the NHLPA and NHL announced that best-on-best international competitions are finally returning.

An international tournament with the world’s best players hasn’t happened since the 2016 World Cup, but NHL players finally return to both the 2026 and 2030 Winter Olympics.

But they also announced the 2025 NHL 4 Nations Face-Off, a brand new tournament set to take place over a nine-day period in February next year.

NHL players from Canada, Finland, Sweden, and the United States will participate in the tournament, which means top Europan players like David Pastrnak, who’s from the Czech Republic, have to wait for the 2026 Olympic Games in Italy. 

When the NHL announced their plans for the four-nation tournament, Pastrnak didn’t try to hide his disappointment.

”It’s a huge disappointment,” Pastrnak said. ”I don’t know much I can say. Definitely not happy about it. I understand that it’s a quick turnaround. It’s next year. They probably didn’t have much time to make it a bigger tournament.

”But Czech isn’t there. So it’s always a lot of players left out, so I’m not gonna watch the tournament, to be honest. So just happy that the Olympics got accepted. Yeah, [it] definitely stings a little bit.”

BOSTON, MASSACHUSETTS – APRIL 26: David Pastrnak #88 of the Boston Bruins looks on against the Florida Panthers during the second period in Game Five of the First Round of the 2023 Stanley Cup Playoffs at TD Garden on April 26, 2023 in Boston, Massachusetts. (Photo by Maddie Meyer/Getty Images)

After the Boston Bruins got eliminated from the Stanley Cup Playoffs, Pastrnak traveled to his native country to play for the Czech Republic in the World Championship, and he didn’t need to regret it.

Pastrnak played a crucial role in Czechia’s 2-0 win against Switzerland in the final, as he scored one of the goals. It was Czechia’s first win in the World Championship since 2010, and afterward, Pastrnak couldn’t help but take a huge dig at the NHL.

David Pastrnak. Source: Bildbyran

Pastrnak posted a picture of himself with the trophy from the locker room postgame and hilariously wrote, ’Maybe Four Nation invite now?’ 

It was an obvious reference to Czechia not getting invited to next year’s tournament, a decision the NHL may regret given their recent success at the World Championship.

On their way to winning the gold medal, the Czech Republic won over Sweden, with players like Erik Karlsson, Victor Hedman, and Rasmus Dahlin on the ice.

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