SBD/16/Leagues Governing Bodies

NHL AND INT'L HOCKEY FEDERATION SIGN OLYMPIC-SIZE PACT

     "After years of haggling," the NHL and the Int'l Ice Hockey
Federation (IIHF) will announce a 3-year agreement today that
covers everything from Olympic participation to expanded int'l
competitions to the "joint formation of a European Super League."
Word of the deal was first reported in THE SPORTS BUSINESS DAILY
on Monday.  IIHF President Rene Fasel: "It is a historic
agreement.  We will work together.  To fight each other brings
nothing."  Fasel feels the highlight of the pact is the
commitment to have NHL players at the '98 Winter Olympics.  In
the agreement, signed in Helsinki last week, the two groups agree
that "in order to ensure the participation of NHL players, that
portion of the Olympic tournament involving NHL players may not
exceed eight days."  The NHL-IIHF pact also commits NHL teams to
release players for the world championships unless there is a
conflict with Stanley Cup playoffs.  Also, each NHL team will pay
$400,000 during the next three years to the IIHF for access to
European players without having to negotiate with the national
federations or individual clubs.  The IIHF will then allocate
monies to teams losing players to the NHL (Alan Adams, CANADIAN
PRESS/Toronto GLOBE & MAIL, 9/16).
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