The International Ice Hockey Federation has approved a proposal allowing professionals, including those in the National Hockey League, to play in the Olympics.
The proposal, which already has received the endorsement of the International Olympic Committee and has the support of IIHF President Gunther Sabetzki of Hungary, will be in effect for the 1988 Winter Games at Calgary, Canada.
But Walter L. Bush, president of the Amateur Hockey Assn. of the United States and a former owner of the Minnesota North Stars, said Wednesday that NHL teams are not likely to release their players for the Olympics.
"It's in the NHL by-laws that teams must present their best teams when they go to opposing rinks," Bush said. "Can you imagine a game in Los Angeles with Edmonton if Wayne Gretzky isn't there? There's not going to be a very good draw.