The Nicklas Backstrom silver-medal saga is finally, mercifully over.
From a joint statement issued by Backstrom, the World Anti-Doping Agency (WADA), the IOC and the IIHF:
After constructive discussions between Mr Backstrom’s representatives and those of the IOC, WADA and the IIHF, Mr Backstrom, pursuant to a settlement agreement, has withdrawn his appeal against the IOC determination that he violated the WADA Code. In turn, the IIHF, WADA and Mr Backstrom have each agreed to resolve WADA’s appeal against the IIHF Disciplinary Committee ruling on the basis that Mr Backstrom be issued a reprimand – the minimum applicable sanction permitted by the WADA Code – in respect of such violation.
Three cheers for bureaucracy!
This, of course, all stems from Backstrom’s positive test for pseudoephedrine during the Winter Olympics in Sochi, where he was representing Sweden. As a result of that test, he was not permitted to play in the gold-medal game versus Canada.
The WADA, IOC and IIHF concluded the joint statement by saying “there is no indication” that Backstrom “intended to enhance his sport performance by taking a prohibited substance.” Rather, the banned substance was something he was “taking for medical reasons” after relying “on the specific advice of his team doctor” that taking the medication would not lead to a positive test.
Bottom line: Backstrom will be allowed to keep his silver medal.