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NHL Personnel Allowed to Participate in World Championships

The National Hockey League will allow league personnel to take part in the upcoming World Ice Hockey Championships in Austria, even if the lockout that canceled the season is still ongoing.

The championships are put on by the International Ice Hockey Federation. Usually, a handful of players join their national teams if their professional clubs fail to reach the Stanley Cup playoffs, or they join once their NHL clubs are eliminated from the playoffs.

NHL chief legal officer Bill Daly said it has also been decided that NHL management personnel, including head and assistant coaches, will be permitted to take part in the World Championships in the same manner and in the same or similar capacities as in prior years.

That leaves the door open for the legendary Wayne Gretzky to lead Canada at the April 30 to May 15 tournament should he choose to. Gretzky, the Phoenix Coyotes' managing partner, was the executive director of the two-time defending champion Canadians.

Some information for this report provided by AP.