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McSorley Signs With British Club

February 7, 2001

LONDON (AP) _ Suspended NHL defenseman Marty McSorley has signed with the London Knights of the British league, but there is no guarantee he’ll play.

McSorley hopes to join his brother, Chris, who is the Knights’ general manager and coach.

First, McSorley must obtain a transfer card from the International Ice Hockey Federation, the Swiss governing body. The IIHF disciplinary committee was not scheduled to rule on McSorley’s case until March 5 in Zurich, Switzerland.

However, Knights spokeswoman Paula George said Wednesday the club was exercising its right under IIHF rules for a hearing in the next 14 days.

IIHF spokesman Kimmo Leinonen said the world body, which does not have to honor the NHL suspension and could have issued the transfer immediately, had asked for ``documentation and video evidence″ from the NHL.

The NHL said it had no objection to whatever action the IIHF took.

``The IIHF is under no obligation to honor any suspension imposed by the NHL,″ NHL spokesman Frank Brown said. ``A player under suspension by the NHL is under suspension only as far as the NHL is concerned.″

McSorley’s one-year suspension for attacking Donald Brashear on the side of the head with his stick expires Feb. 21. He would be free to be picked up by an NHL club after that.

The Knights, who are in second place in the Superleague, wrap up their regular season March 4. The team could play a half-dozen more games if it reaches the playoff finals April 1.

``He wants to come over and get match fit and spend some time with the team and his brother,″ George said.

She said the team would be interested in his services ``if it were only for one game.″

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