MOSCOW, February 19 (R-Sport) - The NHL is interested in allowing its stars to play at next year's Sochi Olympics but is demanding TV rights concessions and rule changes, the Russian Hockey Federation president and three-time gold medalist Vladislav Tretiak told R-Sport.
Negotiations between the NHL, the International Olympic Committee and hockey's global governing body, the IIHF, were held last week in New York, but the situation remains unresolved.
“In general, there is interest from the NHL,” Tretiak, who is involved on the IIHF side, told R-Sport.
“But they are laying down twerms that can be accepted only at the level of the International Olympic Committee. In the NHL, they want to get special TV rights and, for example, permits for the general manager to enter dressing room.”
Former goaltender Tretiak is part of a group debating the issue within the IIHF, he said.
“I’m a part of a special group that is engaged in this issue, but we haven’t met for some time already,” Tretiak said. “Only [IIHF president] Rene Fasel went to the United States this time and he will present a report on the NHL’s stance on February 25. I think then our group will gather again.”
NHL players have been allowed to participate in the Olympics since 1998, with the league stopping play for the duration of the tournament.
Olympic participation was not addressed when the league and players signed a new collective bargaining agreement last month.
Sochi will host the world under-18 championships next month, the first major test event for the Olympics.