To do well in Olympics is what matters most, Mr. Steblin said on many previous occasions. The nearest winter Olympics will be in Turin, Italy, next year.
"What, do you think, will be more important in the World Cup-just how well the boys play, or the final figures?" a Novosti reporter asked him at the conference.
"The two go together, and we can't regard the 'how' and the 'how much' each on its own. After all, one cannot have a good score if one plays any old how. We must win every meet and so get on the world top. That's our target," was the reply.
Does Mr. Steblin mean any result but gold will be regarded as a failure?
"Pragmatism is out of place here. We are not to face the boys with the biggest possible targets set, what with ice hockey making tremendous progress worldwide. Seven or eight teams will be competing for gold," he said.