NHL AND IIHF REACH AGREEMENT

2024-02-06 · 2 min read · NHL/Hockey
International Ice Hockey Federation and the National Hockey League logos

NHL / IIHF

The NHL and IIHF have reached an agreement for NHL players to participate in the next two Olympics (2026/2030). In addition to this the two were also able to finalise plans for the four nations face off in 2025. The NHL has not participated in the Olympics since Sochi 2024, they were going to return for the 2022 Beijing games but Covid foiled this. The four nations' face off will take place over nine days next February to two cities yet to be determined/announced (They are believed to be North American).
The 4N face off will be played between Canada, USA, Sweden and Finland. It will have a three game round robin and then a winner takes all-final, this tourney will cause there to be no all-star festivities next year.
It seems that the NHL/NHLPA hope to upgrade the international hockey calendar from a major event every four years to two with the four nations faceoff being a starting/testing point. It is believed Russia was initially in the plans for this but due to their war with Ukraine, Russia has been excluded from multiple recent events. Russia's status for the 2026 Olympics is still undetermined with IIHF president Luc Tardif saying there will be meetings to determine whether or not Russia will be readmitted and a plan to do so if necessary.
The 2026 Olympics take place in Milan, Italy. Personally I am really happy to hear this, as I am a big fan of Olympic hockey, really any hockey where countries take each other one with high levels of talent and teammates you are unlikely to ever see anywhere else; what's not to enjoy? On top of that I'm for sure going to be checking out the four nationals face off for the reasons listed above, basically it's going to add a fun holdover tournament between Olympics how could that be bad?
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By: Chase Howard

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