Kukla's Korner Hockey
by Paul on 06/10/06 at 02:28 PM ET
Political pressure from Russia's hockey-mad president is behind the transfer deal between the NHL and the Russian Ice Hockey Federation. Putin is a huge hockey fan and he wants nothing more than to see Russia win the 2007 World Hockey Championship tournament in Moscow. And the best way to make sure the Russians can assemble a contending team is to have peace with the National Hockey League. And that's the backdrop to why Russia has tentatively agreed to join the NHL-IIHF transfer agreement. Putin told new Russian Ice Hockey Federation President Vladislav Tretiak that he expects Russia to atop the medal podium at the world tournament next spring. Anything short of wining on home soil will be unacceptable.read on
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