On the 30th of September changes were made to the Kontinental Hockey League’s 2011-2014 regulations, to facilitate the return of Lokomotiv to top-level hockey.
The leadership of the KHL, the lower league (VHL), the KHL players’ union and of Lokomotiv Hockey Club confirmed the provisions added to the regulations regarding the program for the revival of the Lokomotiv team and its return to full participation in the national championship.
“I am pleased to announce that fans of hockey will soon witness the return of the Lokomotiv team,” – said Kontinental Hockey League President Alexander Medvedev. “From December 1st, Lokomotiv will play in the VHL championship, and in the following season, this team will be the foundation of the team which shall return to the KHL tournament. I am grateful to the leaders of the players’ union and of the hockey clubs for the constructive approach and professionalism shown in our work on these provisions. In this tragic situation, when it is impossible to make up for the loss of those who died, all the parties have done everything possible to see that hockey in Yaroslavl will continue to blossom and resume a leading position.”
The principal provisions ensuring the participation of Lokomotiv in competitions:
– Lokomotiv’s youth team, Loko, currently playing in the MHL (youth league) will continue to participate in that tournament, and will play the postponed games during the course of this season. Part of the youth team’s roster will take part in the VHL for the Lokomotiv team.
– The Lokomotiv team’s participation in the VHL championship will commence on the 1st of December 2011. From then until the end of the regular VHL season Lokomotiv will play 22 games – one against each team in the league. Lokomotiv will play at home against opponents from the Western Conference, and away against those in the Eastern Conference.
– Lokomotiv’s entry in the VHL Western Conference play-offs, and the team’s seeding in the play-offs, will be determined not by the total points, but by the percentage of points earned by the team from games in the regular championship.
– Besides their own players, those appearing for the MHL team and those who are free agents, Lokomotiv may select players born between 1989 and 1994 who have current contracts with clubs in the KHL or VHL, and also those whose contractual status is “in conflict” or “vested rights”. KHL clubs have the right to keep two players in the aforementioned age group and who have current contracts.
The transfer of players will be in the form of a transfer agreement without compensation, taking into account the wishes of the player. The Lokomotiv club is not to reduce the benefits or the length of the player’s existing contract.