Feb 7, 2014; Raleigh, NC, USA; Florida Panthers forward Sean Bergenheim (20) carries the puck against the Carolina Hurricanes at PNC Arena. The Carolina Hurricanes defeated the Florida Panthers 5-1. Mandatory Credit: James Guillory-USA TODAY Sports

Sean Bergenheim Turns Down Olympic Invite


Team Finland just can’t get any good news in the past few days.

After losing both Mikko Koivu and Valtteri Filppula to injuries, Finland is scrambling to get back to the 25-man roster. It seemed they had at least one replacement in Sean Bergenheim of the Florida Panthers, a reserve on the Finnish roster.

However, George Richards of the Miami Herald is reporting that Bergenheim has in fact declined Finland’s invitation to participate in the 2014 Winter Olympics.

Bergenheim had this to say.

“For any athlete, having to say no to the Olympics is disappointing… I had to make a decision with my best interests in mind. I really feel I need to the break. I’m happy with how far I have come, but I could take a real step forward after the break.”

Read more here: http://miamiherald.typepad.com/flapanthers/2014/02/no-to-olympics-bergenheim-regrets-having-to-turn-down-offer-from-finland.html#storylink=cpy

This would have been Bergenheim’s first visit to the Olympics, so you have to wonder if he’ll ever get the chance to do it again. Being asked to represent your country is a huge honor and to turn it down is always a hard decision.

With the fact that Bergenheim missed all of this season and parts of this season, his appointment to the reserves of Team Finland says how much the Finns believed in his play in pressure situations. Just look at his performance in his last two visits to the playoffs, and you’ll see that he thrives.

Bergenheim would have been the Florida Panthers’ third Olympian as Aleksander Barkov and Tomas Kopecky are already representing Finland and Slovakia respectively.

You have to wonder if Bergenheim will come to regret this decision some day.

Tags: 2014 Sochi Winter Olympics Florida Panthers Sean Bergenheim