Greek Ice Hockey Championship

Last updated
Greek Ice Hockey Championship
Sport Ice hockey
Founded1989
No. of teams11
CountryFlag of Greece.svg  Greece
Most recent
champion(s)
Iptameni Athens (8th title)
Most titles Iptameni Athens (8 titles)
TV partner(s)None
Official website

The Greek Ice hockey Championship (Greek : Ελληνικό Πρωτάθλημα Χόκεϊ επί Πάγου) is the only level of ice hockey in Greece. It is operated under the jurisdiction of the Hellenic Ice Sports Federation, an associate member of the International Ice Hockey Federation. There are currently registered 100 players.

Contents

History

A Greek hockey team in the USA (1927) Ahepa-hockey-team-c-1927.jpg
A Greek hockey team in the USA (1927)

Hockey was played no later than from the beginning of the 20th century by Greeks in America, even the modern Greek words for ice hockey ("hockey epi pagou") and skates ("pagopedila") are from an older form of the language, as spoken in the first half of the 20th century. It took until 1984, when ice hockey started in Greece in 1984 by players that returned to Greece from abroad. Soon later five teams were formed, three in Athens, one in Salonica and one in Chalkida. The first official game was played in 1985 in Athens.

The first official Greek Championship was held in 1989 in the Peace and Friendship Stadium with five teams taking place. It was the first time hockey games were held in a normal size rink. The following year the Championship was held once again in the Peace and Friendship Stadium.

In 1991, the first junior national team was formed and took part in the World Junior Championship Pool C, held in Belgrade, Yugoslavia. In 1992, the junior national team once again took part in the World Junior Championship Pool C, this time held in Marino and Rome, Italy.

In 1992, the first-ever men's Greek national team was formed and took place in the Men's World Ice Hockey Championships in Pool C2 held in Johannesburg, South Africa. With only two weeks of serious training abroad and the support of the Greeks of South Africa, the national team won the bronze medal. It was extraordinary for a team to win a medal in their first appearance at the World Championships.

Despite the great achievement, the decline of the sport came in 1993. Economic help was discontinued by the Greek Undersecretary of State for Sports and all expenses to keep ice hockey alive were passed over to the players. Practices stopped and many players quit.

Practices started again in 1995 but were limited to once a week. Despite the hard times ice hockey faced, a national team was formed in 1995 and took part in the World Championships held once again in Johannesburg, South Africa (and also Krugersdorp, South Africa). Unfortunately, the problems affected the players and they were unable to defend the bronze medal they had won three years ago. They won one game and tied one in five games.

Although the problems continued to exist, in 1996, the Junior National Team took part in the European Championships. They made one win in five games. In March 1998, the men's national team went to the World Championships held in South Africa. They won one game and, despite all the problems, everyone was amazed at the level of Greek ice hockey.

By early 1999, nothing had changed concerning the funds from the Greek Undersecretary of State for Sports. Despite this, the men's national team took part in the World Championships Pool D held once again in South Africa. The team won one game.

In 2001, the Moschato Ice Rink closed down. Many players stopped playing and others started practicing in the only ice rink left in Greece. An ice rink far too small to be able to hold a serious ice hockey game.

In 2002, the effort was made to rebuild the league, but all efforts fell short.

The only ice rink left in Greece closed down definitely in May 2003.

After the closing of the last ice rink, the players of the national team decided to take trips to the Czech Republic for practices and games. Since that decision, 6 trips have been organized. Every 6 months, the players of the national team pay their own way and travel to the Czech Republic.

For the past 2 years, the national team has been trying to convince the IIHF that despite not having a rink, development of the sport is continuing in Greece. The efforts paid off, since the IIHF, after investigation decided to allow the National Team to compete again in international competition. This was great for Greek ice hockey since the national team competed again in 1999.

In 2006, two ice rinks were built in Greece and the Championship was established again.

Teams

The Greek Ice Hockey Championship consists of 5 teams based in Athens, Thessaloniki and Chalkida

Current teams

Format

In the Regular Season, all 7 teams play twice against each other and the top 4 qualify for the Final Four which is held in the Ano Liosia Olympic Hall located in Ano Liosia, Athens.

Champions

SeasonChampion
1989 Aris Thessaloniki
1990 Aris Thessaloniki
1991 Aris Thessaloniki
1992 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
1993 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
1994No Championship
1995No Championship
1996No Championship
1997No Championship
1998No Championship
1999No Championship
2000 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
2001No Championship
2002No Championship
2003No Championship
2004No Championship
2005No Championship
2006No Championship
2007No Championship
2008 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
2009 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
2010 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
2011 Aris Thessaloniki *
2012No Championship
2013 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai
2014No Championship
2015No Championship
2016No Championship
2017 Tarandos Athens **

* The President of the Greek Federation did not allow Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai participate in the Greek Championship despite the team being active.

** Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai and Albatros Athens did not participate despite both teams being active.

Titles by team

TitlesTeamYear
7 Iptamenoi Pagodromoi Athinai 1992, 1993, 2000, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2013
4 Aris Thessaloniki Ice Hockey Club 1989, 1990, 1991, 2011
1 Ice Guardians Thessaloniki 2017

See also

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References