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The Chance Liga is the second-highest level of professional ice hockey in the Czech Republic, after the Extraliga. It began in 1993 and is run and administered by Czech Ice Hockey Association.

1st Czech Republic Hockey League
SportIce hockey
No. of teams16
Country Czech Republic
Most recent
ČEZ Motor České Budějovice and HC Dukla Jihlava
Promotion toCzech Extraliga
Relegation toCzech 2.liga
Czech Extraliga
Czech 2.liga

Until 2015, the league was known as the 1st Czech National Hockey League. It was then known as the WSM Liga until 2018.



In the first phase, every team plays each other four times—twice at home and twice away—which makes for a 52-game regular season.

After the 52-game regular season, the first six teams directly qualify for the quarter-finals, while teams which placed 7 to 10 play a round-robin to determine the final two participants in the quarter-finals.

The First League, unlike other leagues around the world, has two winners. The playoffs end with the semi-finals, with the two winning teams being declared co-champions. The two teams then go on to face the bottom two teams from the Extraliga in a round-robin. The two highest-placed teams at the end of the round robin are promoted to the Extraliga for the following season.

The last placed team at the end of the regular season is directly relegated to the Second League for the following season. They are replaced by the winner of a 3 team round-robin group between the winners of the East, the Central and the West divisions of the Second League.

Three points are awarded for a win in regulation time and two points for an overtime or shootout victory, while the defeated team in overtime or shootout gets one point.

The level of 1.národní hokejová liga is slightly lower than the Czech Extraliga, but there are a lot of players moving between those two leagues every season. Each team in this league is allowed to have five imports. The league has no salary cap, with an average salary of USD 2200 per month, but some of the best players reportedly sign contracts for more than USD 5000 per month, plus most of the teams cover accommodation expenses for their players during the season.

2017–2018 teamsEdit


External linksEdit