Although the International Ice Hockey Federation does not usually issue statements following unsubstantiated media reports, the IIHF finds it principally important to address the newspaper story (Toronto Star, June 20) that reports about the Russian league allegedly preparing an offer to Pittsburgh Penguin player Evgeni Malkin, who is under contract with the NHL-club.
"Although there will be no imminent Player Transfer Agreement between the IIHF and the NHL, all involved parties are in principal agreement to honour each other’s contracts," says IIHF President René Fasel. "The NHL has informed the IIHF that this will be the policy of the league during the period without a PTA, and conversely, the IIHF has obligated its member national federations and leagues to do the same in its relations with the NHL."
"We would view any signing, from either side, of a player under a valid contract, who does not have any legally valid out-clause, to be a clear violation of the mutual understanding and existing principle. It would potentially be punishable with suspended national team eligibility and suspension from all competition or activity organized by the IIHF or any IIHF member national association. This would include events like the Olympic Winter Games, the IIHF World Championship or international club competitions like the Champions Hockey League.”
“Given this, we are confident that the report is not substantiated.”