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    PHL SETS NO LIMITATIONS FOR NHL PLAYERS' PARTICIPATION IN 2004/05 RUSSIAN CHAMPIONSHIP IN CASE OF LEAGUE LOCKOUT

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    MOSCOW, MARCH 1. /RIA NOVOSTI / -- The collegium of the Professional Hockey League has decided not to impose additional limitations for the participation of NHL players in the 2004/05 Russian championship in case of a lockout in the overseas league.

    RIA Novosti learnt from the PHL press service that the decision was taken at the PHL collegium sitting, which ended on Monday. The collegium has also decided that not more than 28 players shall apply for the next season, with at least one Russian goalkeeper being in the application.

    In the 2004/05 season, the demand for obligatory inclusion of at least two young players (not older than 1985 years of age) shall continue. So is the legionnaires limit - not more than three foreigners in a team's application for a match.

    As to the Russian 2004/05 hockey championship, it will be held according to the old schedule. The first tour of the next championship shall be held on September 1.

    In conditions of the toughening anti-doping struggle, the PHL will continue doping-control work. During a playoff of the current championship, all the eight teams vying for medals will be doping-tested. The World Anti-Doing Agency may protest against any player at any time without notifying the PHL and the Russian Hockey Federation.

    Also, PHL membership criterions have been adopted: the presence of sports palaces for 5,500 seats (starting in 2007), confirmation of the clubs' financial consistency.

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