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06-20-2013, 02:20 AM
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Join Date: Nov 2005
Location: Germany
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Originally Posted by Madic View Post
To sum this up for non-Germans here (simple curiosity), what's the current state of German pro hockey with regards to relegation? I understand the general relegation system (Swedish hockey as an example, and football in general), but does it not work with current German hockey? Some want it to work, others have abandoned it...? Cheers.
Right now the top league (DEL) is similar to the NHL when it comes to relegation, as in there is none. When a team cannot afford or does not want to play in the league anymore, like Hannover this off-season, teams from lower tier leagues may apply for their spot. They don't have to win their respective league to qualify, they just have to meet the requirements set by the DEL, which mostly regard financials, infrastructure, etc., of course it is preferable if they play at a good level, but it is not necessary.

Initially the leagues below the DEL were all controlled by the German hockey federation and there was the common european relegation and promotion system in place. But even then it happened that teams that earned promotion declined to be promoted because they could not afford the increase of travel costs, salarie, etc., that comes with playing in the better league.
However for the last 10 years the ESBG has been running the 2nd tier league (2.Bundesliga) and that further complicated things, because now even the relegation and promotion between 2nd and 3rd tier became problematic.
The teams that the ESBG would have welcomed in their league are the same teams that the DEB and the regional federations do not want to leave the Oberliga since they are their cash cows.

Right now it is really messed up.

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