NHL prefers some
Vancouver Province, May 26, 1972
New York - The Governors
of the National Hockey League agreed Thursday to cooperate with Hockey
Canada in forming an all star team of Canadian born professionals to
face Russia's national team this fall - provided a host of details can
be ironed out satisfactorily.
The foremost request of the
NHL is that the proposed tournament dates be switched so that the four
games scheduled in Russia September 22-28 be played first, and the
four games in Canada later in October or November instead of Sept.
NHL president Clarence
Campbell announced Thursday evening that the governors had designated
William Wirtz, president of Chicago Black Hawks and chairman of the
NHL board, as its representative to help Hockey Canada arrange for the
exhibition series with the Russians.
"This is not an
unequivocal approval to go ahead," Campbell told reporters after
a lengthy closed session. "There are no ground rules yet for this
operation. A lot of things have to be sorted out."
Campbell indicated the NHL
is willing to juggle dates in its schedule in October or November so
that an entire team chosen from NHL ranks could meet the Russians in
four different Canadian cities over an 8 day period without missing a
game with their own clubs.
A key factor would be
whether the Russians will agree to send their team to Canada in either
of those months.
The switch in dates proposed
by the NHL owners would resolve a big objection to the plan initially
proposed. Players would not have to shorten their summer free time to
go into training about August 15th for a Sept. 1 series. They would go
into training as a national team about the usual time for NHL camps,
play in Russia and report to their own clubs for further training
before the start of the NHL season, usually in the Oct. 8-10 period.
The Canadian team could be reassembled
for an eight day period to play games in Montreal, Toronto, Winnipeg
and Vancouver at whatever time in October or November the Russians
would agree to come.
"This has been a
contentious matter with the league owners," said Campbell.
"Nobody wants the Sept. 1-8 dates which have been proposed.
"But if it proves
impossible to change those dates, we may have to accept them."
Russians Nix Change In Hockey
Vancouver Province, June 22, 1972
Toronto - Hockey Canada
received a blow at the negotiation level from the Soviet Union
The Russians refused to
alter the schedule for its proposed eight game hockey series with the
Canadians this fall.
Canada wanted to open the
series in Russia in late September, but the original dates, the first
four games being played in Canada Sept. 1-8, still holds.
The only alteration will be
a shift in the site of the first game from Montreal to Toronto because
of a problem with hotel accommodations.