The NHL planned on releasing the 2013-14 regular season schedule this week but the announcement has been delayed pending the completion of an agreement to secure participation in the 2014 Winter Olympics in Sochi.
Talks between the league, NHLPA, International Olympic Committee and International Ice Hockey Federation are on going and it’s expected that NHL players will take part in a fifth consecutive Olympics. But the groups still must iron out final details, which are believed to be insurance on player contracts and accommodation issues.
The NHL will not release the schedule until there is a resolution on Olympic participation, Deputy Commissioner Bill Daly said.
“There has been no final agreement on the terms of Olympic participation at this point,” Daly told NHL.com. “And unless, or until, there is, the release of the 2013-14 regular-season schedule would be premature. Having said that, we hope that a final resolution on both matters can be achieved in the very near future.”
The men’s hockey tournament in Sochi runs from Feb. 12-23, and it’s believed that the NHL break may be nearly three weeks long to accommodate Olympic participation.