Although every player wants to play in the NHL playoffs every year, the reality is that just doesn't happen (unless you've been with the Red Wings forever).
Sometimes you miss out, and sometimes even when you make it, you're not in the playoffs for long.
That said, the hockey season doesn't end if you don't make the playoffs or if you are eliminated in the first round of the playoffs thanks to the World Hockey Championships.
This year, the tournament is in Germany and France, and countries wait to finalize their rosters as players eliminated from the playoffs could choose to play for their country.
Big name players choosing not to play, however, is a common thing.
One big name player that won't be going to the Worlds is Auston Matthews.
The decision is perfectly reasonable and acceptable when you consider the season Matthews had.
He was one of ten rookies to play in all 82 games this past season and one of five rookies to play in the playoffs, too.
Matthews, though, was the only rookie to play in every regular season game, playoff game and participate in the World Cup of Hockey before the season.
The 19-year-old has played a ton of hockey in a short amount of time and his body needs a break.
Everyone wants the best players in the world to represent their country whenever they have the chance, but Matthews has plenty of time to do that.
For now, though, rest and getting ready for next season is the priority.
(H/T: Pierre LeBrun)