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Future watch Hockeyallsvenskan

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Old
10-20-2010, 09:46 AM
  #1
Ladislav Scurko
 
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Future watch Hockeyallsvenskan

Sweden Tier 2 aka Allsvenskan is today the biggest development league in Sweden. Home of many semi-professional clubs that have been dancing in SEL aswell as upcommers from even lower divisions. There is a huge gap economy-wise between the topdogs Malmö & Leksand and underdogs Troja/Ljungby & Sundsvall.
Will these losing teams that ends up in the bottom of the series year after year continue to survive? I doubt that.
In Trojas case. They are a small town low budget team that lives entirely on money from local business Strålfors and some pocket change for young talents moving towards region dominators HV71. The Arena Sunnerbohov is miserable at most and the only good thing about this team is the long hockeytradition that lives there.
In Sundsvalls case. They are number 2 in the city and functioning as a farm team at Timrå of SEL. No public atendence to speak of, Few sponsors and was religated to Tier 3 (Division 1) last spring but got their slot in Allsvenskan because of economic meltdown of former giants Björklöven.
Now there are a bunch of teams in Division 1 that are aiming for a place in Allsvenskan w a serious mind (Arena, Fanbase, Sponsors) of staying there for a longer term. These are for the moment Karlskrona, Vita Hästen & Björklöven. On a longer perspective we can count in teams as Nyköping, Nybro, Asplöven and maybe Bajen Fans Hockey.
Right or wrong? The future will give us the answers. Any thoughts on this?

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10-21-2010, 08:00 PM
  #2
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I think the gap between the teams in the league now is smaller than it used to be. There are no easy game nowadays. Not as when Hammarby played there, they had no chance whatsoever in many games.

In fact I can't see Hammarby (or Bajen fans hockey or whatever they are called now) get back to Allsvenskan. They had no spectators when they played there last time and I don't see why that would change in the near future.

However, it's completely natural that some will go up and some down. Just like it is in the relation between SEL and Allsvenskan. In my opinion, it's heavily depending on wohat happens in the suciety. A place like Linköping has a lot of optimism and economical resources compared to places in the north, and therefore it was logical that they qualified to SEL, while the most nothern teams just got worse. I mean look at Kiruna etc, it's easy to see the connection between the team's downfall and the place...

Björklöven should get back, as they have spectators and a fairly big city to back them up. Their relegation was more about a bad staff and lack of good leadership within the club.

I can also see clubs such as Malmö (obviously), Växjö and Örebro qualify for SEL...

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10-22-2010, 10:18 AM
  #3
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Allsvenskan is like a doc's waiting room. You're not out in the cold without help, but you're not really getting care for the moment either. You're in no-man's land.
The point is, if your sponsors are happy with you playing in HA for all eternity, you could be just fine there. For teams like Leksand, Malmö, Örebro, etc. that all have a pronounced goal of making it up to the SEL at some point, you only have so long before people get tired, give up and move on to some other prospect.

Depending on what happens with the Euro league, I think it is important for Swedish hockey to have its top 10 cities represented in the top league, and possibly a few more teams based on history and geography. Needless to say, that would be more teams in the top league than Sweden can support with quality players. On the other hand, I really feel that too many of our younger players are getting shafted at the expense of, at best, mediocre imports, making paychex they have no business making, considering their production and league they play in. Sure, there should be competition for all spots on a team, but somehow, in the long run, Swedish hockey would fare a lot better from playing a promissing young kid, who is almost as good as the import, but costs 75% of the import (everybody doesn't have to be slated for the NHL to be considerd promissing in my book). Average Swedish Joe is not such a hockey connoisseur that it will be the reason to why he attends the game or stays home. The players' origin on a club in the smaller cities might have a much bigger impact on the fan's decision in terms of supporting the club.

So how does this come together now with HA?
Right now you have relationships between Borås-Frölunda, Sundsvall-Timrå, Färjestad-Skåre (Div 1)... and somewhat Bofors. If the Euro league happens, it will be crucial for those teams and the remaining SEL to get the largest potential markets into the SEL, such as Almtuna, Västerås, Örebro, Växjö, Leksand, etc. to compliment the remaining SEL clubs (AIK? SAIK? SSK? Timrå?). However, it is in everybody's interest that Allsvenskan then becomes a better and more stabile league for talent to grow and develop as the pressure and demand on producing quality players from Sweden for the Euro League will add to what the KHL and the NHL is already creating on Swedish hockey. As such, I do believe that HA will become more of a Jr. league, and maybe the cure for an ailing J-20 Elite, with almost all teams in it having formal or informal ties with teams in the SEL, as I doubt that very few, if any, teams playing in a future HA will have any real interest or motivation to get promoted to the SEL. The resources simply wouldn't be there for them to fare well fincancially in such setting (thinking of teams like Huddinge, Mariestad, Tingsryd, Vita Hästen, and Bofors).

As money would be harder to come by for everybody (Given that the Euro league happens), I could also see the SEL go to a long overdue conference split to cut some overhead, and the HA getting eliminated in the sense that we know it, and restructured as it once used to be in Allsvenskan North and South. What happens with Div 1 then is impossible to say, but since it should be only four Div. 1's today, hopefully they can get to it then?
**********
Bajen Fans, btw, is all cult now because they are beating up on less than beer leaguers and all the fans can get together for Allsång and beer in Johanneshov once a year (Woohoo!!). However, when the competition tightens up a bit in a diluted Div 1D, if not before, Bajen will be right back in the hurt box with lacking support that once sent them tumbeling into the abyss of Swedish hockey. The story is starting to repeat itself on the soccer side of things (board is different; fans are the same). To be fair, AIK might be next; same problem.

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Old
10-22-2010, 09:20 PM
  #4
SurMartin
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It's friday night and all, I might be rambling and sorry for going a bit OT here, but it still has some relevance to the future of HA.

You make some very good points, But I think you're underrestimating the tradition and fan-culture here. Swedish clubs have to depend very much on the fans.
My biggest concern is the removing of promotion and demotion of teams to and from the new Euro league/SEL etc. Just like with the bottom clubs in HA right now, the clubs left out might struggle to survive. With the bait missing, the thrill is gone. Why care about winning SEL when you can never be the best team in Sweden? And people just don't switch team like that. Can you see a SAIK fan converting to Lulea? A Timra-fan to Modo? AIK to Djurgarden? Rogle to Malmoe? etc. In about 15 years, the younger ones might, but by then their old team would not exist in its current state anymore.
Long term I'd say many teams in SEL and HA would be reduced to low-division teams. If they're not able to become farm teams, the Euro-teams might instead have new and local teams, or current low-division teams make up their farm teams. Fans of the current SEL/HA teams would
A: follow their old team, but more casual.
B: Casually follow both the old team and a Euroteam.
C: Follow a Euroteam.
D: Stop caring about hockey.

Sure, after some 15 years you'd have a real ”nhl of europe”,. But you would have killed the things I love about swedish hockey.

More on topic:
As it is, the gap between the top and bottom teams of HA is closing, while the interest in the league has never been higher. Loads of teams have a shot at Kvalserien.
Kiruna have sadly been robbed of potential players and many people there are cheering for Lulea/SAIK while only caring casually about their hometeam. Otherwise I'd love to have them back in HA. Pitea has the same problem as Kiruna but I think they're on the rise and have a big shot at HA in the future.
Björklöven will soon be in HA again, and if they can get their finance together they'll probably be able to qualify for SEL in a couple of years. Sundsvall have surprised me, but they're relying on loans and have too few spectators. With Timra being succesfull and that close it's almost impossible for them to climb higher.

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Old
10-24-2010, 07:29 AM
  #5
Ladislav Scurko
 
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It's funny to see that Bajen Fans Hockey concerns so many people. BFH can easily be described as the most talked about hockey fenomena i Sweden today and it's rarely in positive aspects.

This thread was not constructed to talk about them. What I wanted to talk to w u guys about is If there are any serious contenders to make Hockeyallsvenskan even better? Economy wise. Arena size. Fan related and so on.

I believe a team like Vita Hästen would in the long run be a much better fit in HA than for example Sundsvall. Why? Because of the City location and size. Many sponsors in Norrköping (Holmen etc). A legendary coach in Sune Bergman. The tradition to live on as a former Powerhouse in the early 90's w Richard Rauge & co. The Arena Himmelstalundshallen (even though it needs some restoration that suites 4500 pers.

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10-28-2010, 12:53 PM
  #6
Ribban
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ladislav Scurko View Post
It's funny to see that Bajen Fans Hockey concerns so many people. BFH can easily be described as the most talked about hockey fenomena i Sweden today and it's rarely in positive aspects.

This thread was not constructed to talk about them. What I wanted to talk to w u guys about is If there are any serious contenders to make Hockeyallsvenskan even better? Economy wise. Arena size. Fan related and so on.

I believe a team like Vita Hästen would in the long run be a much better fit in HA than for example Sundsvall. Why? Because of the City location and size. Many sponsors in Norrköping (Holmen etc). A legendary coach in Sune Bergman. The tradition to live on as a former Powerhouse in the early 90's w Richard Rauge & co. The Arena Himmelstalundshallen (even though it needs some restoration that suites 4500 pers.
Well, much like the catastrophy called Div 1 (a-z) would fare well from some consolidation, I truly believe HA would need some of that as well. At least break it up into two conferences, where you do play the teams in the other conference but not as many times as those in your own.

Look at Örebro this year, a real disaster in terms of audience despite sitting on top of the league after 1/4 of the season. Yes there are many reasons to why ÖHK is having a hard time luring people to the "Bunker," but against Västerås and Bofors, they seem to fill the barn. Against Sundsvall and Växjö, not so much. I had an article from Nerikes Allehanda sent to me, regarding ÖHK's challenges with attracting people to the games, and the commentaries/reactions were quite interesting, and I can't imagine that other HA teams have it all that different. Here is the link.

http://na.se/sporten/ishockey/1.9934...orebropubliken

Looking at Vita Hästen, or Norrköping in general, it may be the only place in Sweden with worse fans than in Örebro. I mean, not even a classic like IFK Norrköping seems to draw people out of their houses?! Do you really see Vita Hästen fill "Himpan" when Oskarshamn, Växjö, Rögle, Sundsvall, Mora are in town? I don't think so. They would need a fair amount of competetive rivalry games against VIK and ÖHK... but that will never happen, of course!


Last edited by Ribban: 10-28-2010 at 12:59 PM.
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10-28-2010, 04:38 PM
  #7
zecke26
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ribban View Post
Looking at Vita Hästen, or Norrköping in general, it may be the only place in Sweden with worse fans than in Örebro.
örebro has amazing fans, just not close to the arena. thinking of...you and me.

my excuse is 1200km x 2. i bet your excuse is even bigger.

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10-28-2010, 05:15 PM
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Ribban
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örebro has amazing fans, just not close to the arena. thinking of...you and me.

my excuse is 1200km x 2. i bet your excuse is even bigger.
LOL!

Let's just say we are in the 1,000+ club!

However, this summer, I managed to catch a pre-season game vs. Mora in "Da Bunker!" I don't know what was harder, getting to Örebro or getting to the game. Either way, it was an "experience!"

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10-28-2010, 05:36 PM
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Ladislav Scurko
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ribban View Post

Looking at Vita Hästen, or Norrköping in general, it may be the only place in Sweden with worse fans than in Örebro. I mean, not even a classic like IFK Norrköping seems to draw people out of their houses?! Do you really see Vita Hästen fill "Himpan" when Oskarshamn, Växjö, Rögle, Sundsvall, Mora are in town? I don't think so. They would need a fair amount of competetive rivalry games against VIK and ÖHK... but that will never happen, of course!
Hästens 1600 spectators in Div 1 is way more than Sundsvalls 900 spectators in Allsvenskan. Thats a fact.

Karlskronas 2800 spectators in Div 1 is way more than Örebros 1700. Thats also a fact.

So even if we dont like the farmers from Karlskrona & Norrköping we can not underestimate them in the long run.

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10-29-2010, 01:35 AM
  #10
Ribban
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Originally Posted by Ladislav Scurko View Post
Hästens 1600 spectators in Div 1 is way more than Sundsvalls 900 spectators in Allsvenskan. Thats a fact.

Karlskronas 2800 spectators in Div 1 is way more than Örebros 1700. Thats also a fact.

So even if we dont like the farmers from Karlskrona & Norrköping we can not underestimate them in the long run.
No argument from me on Karlskrona. They seem to have some legs for HA for sure, when that time comes... 2014 is the goal?

However, Norrköping is a deadbeat as far as I am concerned. To compare that team with Örebro is really poor form to begin with. To get specific, I understand that they have a few hurting souls going to games right now... 1600 of them? (More than I thought indeed). However, my argument is that even if they advance, which is unlikely, they will not have that many more, and they don't have a Mikael Fahlander to carry the club, not only with his own money, but with a network, who can add to that bottom line.

Remember, Örebro is having a "new" stadium built with a larger capacity. Right now, they are hurting in cement bunkar a' la DDR cheapo build, which on top of that is under renovation, so to draw conclusions based on the average number of spectators for these clubs is just about as wrong as you can get. Make "Himpan" a construction site and see how many people would come to the Little Pony games then... it might actually not change, as there is nothing to do in Norrzzzzzöping.... XBox, anybody?

No, Norrköping will need Örebro if they want to survive in the HA for sure, just like in anything else that matters. But, as you pointed out about Sundsvall, Sundsvall survives because of its exchange with Timrå, so perhaps Norrköping can be a farm team of Örebro in the future?... Probably not though. Örebro has a better prospect in Kumla for that, same division as Norrköping, but a better managed club.


Last edited by Ribban: 10-29-2010 at 01:46 AM.
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10-29-2010, 04:59 PM
  #11
Ladislav Scurko
 
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Concerning Mr Fahlanders whereabouts in ÖHK could not be counted in as a safe money investor in the long run. He has stock percentage in Karlskrona as well. Im not 100 % sure he will stay behind "Vipers" all the way.

I agree that Pontus Molander is the wrong man leading Vita Hästen towards success but honestly wouldn't it be nice to have VIK, ÖHK & Hästen in Allsvenskan for the character of Derby games. 3 decent citys pretty damn close to each other.

If we count in Björklöven as a true contender we need to get rid of a third boring team w-out attendance. That would be Borås!

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