Oberliga (ice hockey)

Last updated
Oberliga
Oberliga (Ice Hockey) logo.png
Sport Ice hockey
Founded1948(73 years ago) (1948)
No. of teams24
CountryFlag of Germany.svg  Germany
Flag of the Netherlands.svg  Netherlands
Confederation DEB
Most recent
champion(s)
EV Landshut
(4th title)
Most titles EV Füssen
(7 titles)
TV partner(s)Sprade TV
Promotion to DEL2
Relegation to Regionalliga
Related
competitions
Deutsche Eishockey Liga
Official website Oberliga South
Oberliga North

The Oberliga (English: Upper League) is the third tier of ice hockey in Germany, below DEL2 and ahead of the Regionalliga. Since the 2015/16 season, the league has been split into two regionalised divisions, Nord (north) and Süd (south). The Oberliga was originally founded in 1948 and is administered by the German Ice Hockey Federation (DEB).

Contents

History

The Oberliga is the oldest continuously operating ice hockey league in Germany. The league was formed in 1948 after WWII as the highest level of hockey in Germany. The Oberliga has been the top, second and third level of ice hockey in the German league pyramid throughout its history. The 1948/49 Oberliga champions, EV Füssen, were the very first Deutscher Meister (English: German champion). In 2015/16, Oberliga was the first German league to admit a Dutch team, Tilburg Trappers, to compete in the German league system.

1948–58

The Oberliga started its first season in 1948/49 with six teams. Those teams played a home-and-away season to determine the German champion. The founding members of the league were:

EV Füssen won the inaugural Oberliga championship and were named Oberliga and German champions. The league expanded to eight clubs for the second season and twelve in the third. From 1952 to 1956 the league trimmed the number of teams back to eight before working to restore the number to 12 by the 1957/58 season. The 1957/58 season was the last one for the league as the highest level of play in Germany. The German Ice Hockey Federation decided to form the Eishockey-Bundesliga to replace the Oberliga as the new top division. The top eight clubs from the Oberliga, qualified for the new top division with the bottom four remaining in the Oberliga.

1958–73

The Oberliga had now become the second tier of German ice hockey (second division). The league started with eight clubs, including the four remaining clubs from the previous season. The league expanded to twelve in the coming seasons. The year 1966 saw the league split into northern and southern regionalised groups. The two separate leagues were called Oberliga South and Oberliga North. The winners of the two leagues would determine the Oberliga champion in a home-and-away series.

The league reunited in a single division in 1970, now with a strength of 16 teams and direct promotion to the Bundesliga.

The 1972/73 season was the last one as a tier-two league. With the foundation of the 2nd Bundesliga, the Oberliga fell to tier three. While the league champion moved up to the Bundesliga and the teams placed two to nine gained entry to the new second division, only the bottom seven clubs remained in the league.

1973 saw DEB introduce a new second division to the German ice hockey pyramid, with the formation of the 2nd Bundesliga. The Oberliga was demoted to become the new German third division (third highest level of ice hockey in Germany). 1972-73 was the last season Oberliga operated as the division two league. The Oberliga champion that season was granted automatic promotion to the Bundesliga. Clubs that finished second to ninth qualified for automatic entry to the new 2nd Bundesliga, while the bottom seven clubs remained in Oberliga.

1973–94

The Oberliga was now again divided into a northern and a southern group. The top two teams out of the two divisions originally played out a promotion round to the 2nd Bundesliga which also served to determine the Oberliga champion. While the modus and number of teams in the league continued to fluctuate, the overall situation remained the same.

1994–99

The year 1994 saw major changes in the German league system. The Bundesliga and 2nd Bundesliga merged to form the new DEL, an independently run league consisting of 18 clubs in its foundation years. Those second division clubs that did not elect to join the DEL were integrated into the new 1st Liga, which had replaced the Oberliga and operated in a northern and a southern group. The best teams of each of the two divisions played out a DEB championship, similar to the old Oberliga championship.

The 1998-99 season was very much a transition season. The DEB had reintroduced a single-division, nationwide league, titled Bundesliga to compete with the DEL. The league below was now the 1st Liga, which was made up of those clubs from the 1st Liga not adCentred to the new Bundesliga and 2nd Liga clubs. However, this situation existed for only one season.

1999–present

From 1999, the league returned to its traditional name Oberliga, with two regional groups, north and south. In turn, the league above it took the name 2nd Bundesliga. The DEL renamed itself DEL - Bundesliga.

Due to a lack of interest, the Oberliga North dissolved after the 2000-01 season. The three clubs from this region which were still interested in playing on Oberliga level joined the southern division.

The Oberliga South, largely made up of Bavarian clubs, continued to operate successfully in the coming season, usually including a couple of northern clubs, while the Oberliga North was not reestablished until 2007.

The ESBG, now operating the 2nd Bundesliga and Oberliga for the DEB decided to reform an Oberliga North in 2007. The two separate divisions of the league were however not completely independent of each other, like in the past. Teams from the same league would meet each other four times now, while clubs from different divisions would only meet twice in the regular season. At the end of this, a combined play-off round would determine the Oberliga champion.

In 2007–08, the Oberliga was split in a northern and a southern group for the first time since 2001. The northern group contains nine, the southern ten clubs. The four best-placed teams from each group enter a best-of-five play-off round to determine the Oberliga champion and the two promoted teams to the 2nd Bundesliga. The bottom four in each group enter a play-down round to determine the relegated teams.

In the 2008–09 season, the league played in a single division format before switching to four regional divisions with an Oberliga championship at the end from 2010 onwards.

In Summer 2010 the organisation of the Oberliga goes away from the ESBG and the Mode was changed:

Current teams

Netherlands location map.svg
2019/20 Dutch teams in Oberliga
Oberliga North Teams: 2019–20 Season
TeamLocationArenaCapacityFoundedJoined
league
CityState
Füchse Duisburg Duisburg Flag of North Rhine-Westphalia.svg North Rhine-Westphalia Scania Arena 4,80019712010
Black Dragons Erfurt Erfurt Flag of Thuringia.svg Thuringia Kartoffelhalle Erfurt1,20020102010
Moskitos Essen Essen Flag of North Rhine-Westphalia.svg North Rhine-Westphalia Eissporthalle Essen-West3,85019942015
Saale Bulls Halle Halle (Saale) Flag of Saxony-Anhalt (state).svg Saxony-Anhalt Eissporthalle Halle2,20020042010
Hamburg Crocodiles Hamburg Flag of Hamburg.svg Hamburg Eisland Farmsen2,30019902010
Hannover Indians Hannover Flag of Lower Saxony.svg Lower Saxony Eisstadion am Pferdeturm 4,60819482013
Hannover Scorpions Hannover Flag of Lower Saxony.svg Lower Saxony Eishalle Langenhagen3,80019962013
Herner EV 2007 Herne Flag of North Rhine-Westphalia.svg North Rhine-Westphalia Gysenberghalle3,70020072012
Krefeld Pinguine U23 Krefeld Flag of North Rhine-Westphalia.svg North Rhine-Westphalia König Palast 9,00019952011
IceFighters Leipzig Leipzig Flag of Saxony.svg Saxony Kohlrabizirkus Eisarena2,50020102010
Rostock Piranhas Rostock Flag of Mecklenburg-Western Pomerania.svg Mecklenburg-Vorpommern Eishalle Rostock2,00019902010
Tilburg Trappers Tilburg North Brabant-Flag.svg North Brabant IJssportcentrum Tilburg2,50019382015
Oberliga South Teams: 2019–20 Season
TeamLocationArenaCapacityFoundedJoined
league
CityState
EV Füssen Füssen Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Bundesleistungszentrum 4,70019222019
Höchstadter EC Höchstadt Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eisstadion Höchstadt2,00019932018
ECDC Memmingen Memmingen Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eissportstadion am Hühnerberg3,85019922017
EV Lindau Islanders Lindau Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eichwaldstadion1,10019762016
EC Peiting Peiting Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eisstadion Peiting2,50019732000
SC Riessersee Garmisch-Partenkirchen Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Olympia-Eissport-Zentrum 6,92619202018
ERC Sonthofen 1999 Sonthofen Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eissporthalle Sonthofen2,86019992014
Eisbären Regensburg Regensburg Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Donau Arena 4,96119622010
Starbulls Rosenheim Rosenheim Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Emilo Stadion4,75020002017
Selber Wölfe Selb Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Hutschenreuther Eissporthalle4,08220042010
1. EV Weiden Weiden Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eisstadion Weiden2,56019852012
Deggendorfer SC Deggendorf Flag of Bavaria (lozengy).svg Bavaria Eissporthalle an der Trat4,00020022019

Champions and premiers

Oberliga Champions and League Premiers
YearLvlChampion(s)League Premier(s)
NorthSouthEastWest
19491 EV Füssen
19501 SC Riessersee
19511 Preußen Krefeld
19521 Krefelder EV
19531EV Füssen
19541EV Füssen
19551EV Füssen
19561EV Füssen
19571EV Füssen
19581EV Füssen
19592 VfL Bad Nauheim
19602 TuS Eintracht Dortmund
19612 ESV Kaufbeuren
19622 EV Landshut
19632EV Landshut
19642TuS Eintracht Dortmund
19652Preußen Krefeld
19662 Berliner Schlittschuhclub Berliner Schlittschuhclub
19672 Augsburger EV VfL Bad Nauheim Augsburger EV
19682SC Riessersee Eintracht Frankfurt SC Riessersee
19692ESV Kaufbeuren Kölner EC ESV Kaufbeuren
19702 EV Rosenheim EC Deilinghofen EV Rosenheim
19712Preußen Krefeld
19722Berliner Schlittschuhclub
19732 Kölner EC
19743 EC Peiting EC Hannover EC Peiting
19753 TSV Straubing Herner EV EHC 70 München
19763 EV Landsberg Herner EVEHC 70 München
19773 ERC Freiburg EHC Essen ERC Freiburg
19783 RSC Bremerhaven RSC Bremerhaven EV Regensburg
19793 Deggendorfer SC Herner EV Deggendorfer SC
19803 Hamburger SV Hamburger SV VER Selb
19813 Eintracht Frankfurt (North)
Augsburger EV (South)
Hamburger SVAugsburger EV
19823Eintracht FrankfurtEintracht FrankfurtEC Peiting
19833 SV Bayreuth ESG Kassel SV Bayreuth
19843EC Bad NauheimEC Bad NauheimVER Selb
19853 SC Solingen SC Solingen EHC 80 Nürnberg
19863 EHC 80 Nürnberg Neusser SC EHC 80 Nürnberg EV Stuttgart
19873 EC Ratingen (North)
EV Stuttgart (centre)
ERC Ingolstadt (South)
19883 ERC Sonthofen ERC Westfalen Dortmund ERC Sonthofen
19893Augsburger EV ECD Sauerland Iserlohn Augsburger EV
19903 EV Ravensburg Grefrather EC EV Ravensburg
19913 SC Memmingen EC Bad Nauheim SC Memmingen
19923 ETC Timmendorfer Strand ETC Timmendorfer Strand TuS Geretsried
19933 Frankfurter ESC Frankfurter ESC EV Landsberg
19943 EC Bad Tölz ESC Wedemark Heilbronner EC
19952/3EHC Freiburg (1.liga)
Grefrather EV (2.liga)
ERC Westfalen Dortmund (1.liga)
Grefrather EV (2.liga)
SC Riessersee (1.liga)
EV Dingolfing (2.liga)
19962/3 ESC Wedemark (1.liga)
Limburger EG (2.liga)
ESC Wedemark (1.liga)
Limburger EG (2.liga)
Heilbronner EC (1.liga)
ERC Ingolstadt (2.liga)
19972/3 EHC Neuwied (1.liga)
SC Bietigheim-Bissingen (2.liga)
EHC Neuwied (1.liga)
Braunlager EHC/Harz (2.liga)
EC Bad Tölz (1.liga)
SC Bietigheim-Bissingen (2.liga)
19982/3EHC Neuwied (1.liga)
EHC Braunlage/Harz (2.liga)
EHC Neuwied (1.liga)Heilbronner EC (1.liga)
EV Regensburg (2.liga)
19993/4 REV Bremerhaven (1.liga)
EHC Bad Aibling (2.liga)
REV Bremerhaven (1.liga)SC Bietigheim-Bissingen (1.liga)
EHC Bad Aibling (2.liga)
20003 EV Duisburg (North)
EHC Straubing (South)
EV Duisburg EHC Straubing
20013 EHC Wolfsburg (North)
EV Regensburg (South)
EHC Wolfsburg EV Regensburg
20023EV Landshut EV Landshut
20033 1. EV Weiden ERV Schweinfurt
20043REV BremerhavenEHC Moskitos Essen
20053 Dresdner Eislöwen Dresdner Eislöwen Heilbronner Falken
20063EV Landsberg 2000EV Landsberg 2000
20073 Heilbronner Falken SC Riessersee
20083Dresdner EislöwenDresdner EislöwenTölzer Löwen
20093 Hannover Indians (North)
ESV Kaufbeuren (South)
Hannover IndiansEC Peiting
20103Starbulls RosenheimHerner EV
20113SC Riessersee Rostock Piranhas Tölzer Löwen Saale Bulls Halle EHC Dortmund
20123Tölzer LöwenRostock PiranhasEC PeitingSaale Bulls HalleEHC Dortmund
20133RT Bad NauheimEHC Timmendorfer Strand 06EC PeitingSaale Bulls HalleKassel Huskies
20143Hannover ScorpionsVER Selb Icefighters Leipzig Löwen Frankfurt
20153EHC FreiburgHannover ScorpionsEHC FreiburgIcefighters LeipzigFüchse Duisburg
20163 Tilburg Trappers Füchse DuisburgEV Regensburg
20173Tilburg TrappersHerner EV 2007Tölzer Löwen
20183Tilburg Trappers Tilburg Trappers Deggendorfer SC
20193EV LandshutTilburg TrappersEC Peiting
20203Tilburg TrappersEisbären Regensburg

See also

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References