Eisbären Berlin (help·info) (English: Berlin Polar Bears) is a professional ice hockey team based in Berlin, Germany. The team competes in the Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL), the highest level of play in professional German ice hockey, and is also one of the league's founding members. The Eisbären have won the DEL championship more often than any other team. The club captured national 7 DEL titles. They won the German ice hockey cup in 2008 as well as the European Trophy in 2010. Before reunification the team won the East German ice hockey championship 15 times.
|League||Deutsche Eishockey Liga|
|Home arena||Mercedes-Benz Arena|
|Owner(s)||Anschutz Entertainment Group|
(Philip Anschutz, chairman)
|General manager||Peter-John Lee|
|Head coach||Serge Aubin|
The club's origins go back to 1954. Following incorporation into the West German 1. Bundesliga in 1990, the team was renamed EHC Dynamo Berlin and again in 1992 to EHC Eisbären Berlin. The home games are played at the Mercedes-Benz Arena.
The Eisbären Berlin are owned by the Anschutz Entertainment Group. The official logo of the team is the polar bear, a reference to the bear appearing on Berlin's coat of arms.
1954–1994: GDR and 1. Bundesliga yearsEdit
The sports club Dynamo Berlin (SC Dynamo Berlin) was part of the sports association SV Dynamo of the East German Police and Secret service. It offered a wide spectrum of competitive athletic activities, including track and field, swimming, gymnastics, fencing, rowing, boxing and ice skating. SC Dynamo Berlin created an ice hockey section in 1954 and the club won their East German first title in 1966. In 1971, the league was reduced to just two teams and SC Dynamo Berlin and SG Dynamo Weißwasser made up the smallest ice hockey league in the world. All together Berlin won the East German championship 15 times, the last title coming in 1988. In 1984, Dynamo Berlin competed at the European Cup of Champions and came in third place.
In 1990, the year of German reunification, both former East German ice hockey clubs, SC Dynamo Berlin and SG Dynamo Weißwasser, which had been renamed PEV Weißwasser, were assigned to the 1. Bundesliga, at the time the highest level of play in German ice hockey. The club was renamed EHC Dynamo Berlin in the same year. However, Berlin was unable to compete successfully and was consequently relegated to the lower 2. Bundesliga at the end of the season. The club was promoted back to the 1. Bundesliga following the 1991–92 season. In 1992 the club was renamed again, this time to "EHC Eisbären Berlin" and also introduced the polar bear logo. However, due to severe financial difficulties, the club had to rely heavily on its junior and other low-tier players and thus regularly finished at the bottom of the standings and struggled to avoid relegation to the 2. Bundeliga.
1994–present: DEL yearsEdit
The German Eishockey Bundesliga was abolished following the 1993–94 season and a new league – Deutsche Eishockey Liga (DEL) – was created. The Eisbären are one of the league's 18 founding members. Following the Bosman ruling of 1995, the club replaced almost the entire roster with veteran European players in 1996–97. The team finished the regular season in third place and reached the DEL play-offs for the first time. In 1997 the club was renamed into "EHC neue Eisbären Berlin gegr. 1997 e.V.". The following season, 1997–98, the Eisbären advanced to the final round of the DEL play-offs and finished the season as runner up. The team also participated in the 1998 IIHF Continental Cup in Tampere, Finland, and finished in second place. In 1998–99, Eisbären participated in the European Hockey League and finished in third place.
The Anschutz Entertainment Group acquired sole ownership of the Eisbären in 1999, ensuring financial stability. The team finished in second place at the 2000 IIHF Continental Cup. In 2002–03 and 2003–04 the team finished the DEL regular season in first place, but fell short of capturing the title. At that time, the team had already become hugely popular, selling out 28 of 31 home games during the 2003–04 season In 2005–06 and 2006–07, the Eisbären were the German representative at the Spengler Cup in Davos, Switzerland.
In 2004–05, a season by characterised by the 2004–05 NHL lockout saw the Eisbären capture their first DEL championship. With the help of NHL veterans, such as Erik Cole, Nathan Dempsey and Olaf Kölzig, Berlin beat Mannheim in three games. The title was defended successfully in 2006 against the DEG Metro Stars. The third DEL championship was captured in 2008, when the Eisbären beat Kölner Haie in the final round of the play offs. In 2008, the Eisbären hosted the NHL's Tampa Bay Lightning in a pre-season game, which the Lightning won 4:1. The fourth DEL title followed in 2009, when the DEG Metro Stars were beaten 3:1 in a best-of-five final play-off round. In 2010, the team won the European Trophy, continuing its success on an international scale. A fifth DEL title was won in 2011, when the Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg were swept in the final round of the play-offs. The most recent title was won in 2012, after a full length best-of-five final against Adler Mannheim. With that title, the Eisbären Berlin have won 6 DEL titles, making them the current DEL championship record holder.
In the 2016–17 league season, the Eisbären Berlin drew an average home attendance of 12,052.
Until the 2007–08 season the Eisbären played home games at the Sportforum Hohenschönhausen complex. The corrugated tin roof of the ice hockey facility gave rise to the stadium's popular name "Wellblechpalast" (English: corrugated tin palace). The standing/seating capacity of the stadium is 4695. Whilst the "Wellblechpalast" is still being used as a training facility, since the 2008 season the Eisbären are playing their home games in the Mercedes-Benz Arena (formerly known as O2 World), a multi functional arena located at the Spree River with a seating-capacity of 14,200.
The official team anthem of the Eisbären Berlin is "Hey, wir wollen die Eisbären seh'n" (approximately "Hey, We Want to See The Polar Bears"), recorded by veteran East German band the Puhdys in 1997. The song became a popular tune in German mountain resorts during après-ski parties, and went on to appear on several winter-themed music compilations. Dutch team Geleen Eaters have also used a lyrically-altered cover of the song as their victory anthem.
The Eisbären goal song consists of a sequence of four separate elements. The line "Berlin, Halleluja Berlin", from the song "Brandenburg" by Rainald Grebe is followed by the can-can from Jacques Offenbach's Orpheus in the Underworld and the line "Ach du meine Nase" by the East German puppet character Pittiplatsch. The sequence is completed by the children's rhyme „Ene mene miste“ from the popular children's TV programme Rappelkiste.
Deutsche Eishockey Liga Championship: 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013
East German Ice Hockey Championship: 1966, 1967, 1968, 1976, 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1982, 1983, 1984, 1985, 1986, 1987, 1988
European Trophy: 2010
Deutscher Eishockey-Pokal: 2008
IIHF Continental Cup: 1998, 2000 
SKODA AUTO European Hockey League (EHL): 1999
Updated May 15, 2019.
Note: GP= Games, W = Win, L = Loss, T = Tie, OTL = Overtime Loss, GF = Goals For, GA = Goals Against
Point System: Win = 2 points, T = 1 point, OTL = 1 point
|1990–91||1. BL||44||8||29||7||0||23||12th||118||146||Relegated to 2. BL, lost to PEV Weißwasser 0:3 (best of five series)|
|1991–92||2. BL||48||25||13||10||0||60||3rd||233||162||Promoted to 1. BL|
|1992–93||1. BL||44||8||30||6||0||22||12th||118||207||Missed the Play-offs, avoided relegation, beat SERC 4:0 (best of seven series)|
|1993–94||1. BL||44||11||31||2||0||24||11th||119||214||Missed the Play-offs, avoided relegation, beat SERC 4:0 (best of seven series)|
|1994–95||DEL||44||10||32||2||0||22||18th||136||229||Missed the Play-offs|
|1995–96||DEL||50||11||34||3||2||27||17th||125||236||Missed the Play-offs|
|1996–97||DEL||50||26||19||4||1||57||4th||177||163||Lost the Semifinal to Kassel Huskies 1:3 (best of seven series)|
|1997–98||DEL||48||27||14||6||1||61||1st||179||139||Lost the Final to Adler Mannheim 1:3 (best of five series)|
Note: W = Win, SOW – Shoot-out Win; L = Losses, SOL' – Shoot-out Losses
Point System: As of the 1998/99 season a new point scoring system was introduced: Win = 3 points; OT/SO Win = 2 points, OTL/SOL = 1point
|1998–99||DEL||52||26||4||17||5||91||2nd||210||163||Lost the Semifinal to Adler Mannheim 1:3 (best of five series)|
|1999–00||DEL||56||23||2||30||3||70||13th||181||193||Missed the Play-offs|
|2000–01||DEL||60||19||6||31||4||73||14th||192||221||Missed the Play-offs|
|2001–02||DEL||60||25||6||24||5||92||7th||177||166||Lost the Quarterfinal to Adler Mannheim 1:3 (best of five series)|
|2002–03||DEL||52||30||5||8||9||109||1st||188||134||Lost the Semifinal to Krefeld Pinguine 1:3 (best of five series)|
|2003–04||DEL||52||29||5||12||6||103||1st||171||126||Lost the Final to Frankfurt Lions 1:3 (best of five series)|
|2004–05||DEL||52||101||2nd||166||141||Won the Final against Adler Mannheim 3:1 (best of five series)|
|2005–06||DEL||52||34||n/a||18||n/a||100||1st||181||142||Won the Final against DEG Metro Stars 3:0 (best of five series)|
|2006–07||DEL||52||24||28||77||9th||171||157||Lost preliminary round to Frankfurt Lions 1:2 (best of three series)|
Note: GP = Games, W = Wins, OTW = Overtime Wins, SOW = Shoot-out Wins, L = Losses, OTL – Overtime Losses, SOL = Shoot-out Losses, GF = Goals For, GA = Goals Against
Point System: Win = 3 points; OT/SO Win = 2 points, OTL/SOL = 1point
|2007–08||DEL||56||33||2||3||14||3||1||113||2nd||231||165||Won the Final against Kölner Haie 3:1 (best of five series)|
|2008–09||DEL||52||36||1||4||14||0||2||105||1st||214||143||Won the Final against DEG Metro Stars 3:1 (best of five series)|
|2009–10||DEL||52||36||2||4||11||1||2||123||1st||209||156||Lost the Quarterfinal to Augsburger Panther 2:3 (best of five series)|
|2010–11||DEL||52||24||1||5||16||1||5||90||3rd||161||138||Won the Final against Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg 3:0 (best of five series)|
|2011–12||DEL||52||26||3||4||16||2||1||95||1st||171||140||Won the Final against Adler Mannheim 3:2 (best of five series)|
|2012–13||DEL||52||23||2||3||18||3||3||85||4th||180||152||Won the Final against Kölner Haie 3:1 (best of five series)|
|2013–14||DEL||52||20||3||5||20||0||4||80||8th||152||152||Lost the preliminary round playoff to ERC Ingolstadt 1:2 (best of three series)|
|2014–15||DEL||52||20||2||5||21||2||2||78||9th||162||143||Lost the preliminary round playoff to Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers 1:2 (best of three series)|
|2015–16||DEL||52||27||4||0||18||0||3||92||2nd||152||136||Lost the Quarterfinal to Kölner Haie 3:4 (best of seven series)|
|2016–17||DEL||52||19||1||1||24||5||2||68||8th||125||148||Lost the Semifinal to EHC München 1:4 (best of seven series)|
|2017–18||DEL||52||29||2||2||13||1||5||101||2nd||169||131||Lost the Final to EHC München 3:4 (best of seven series)|
|2018–19||DEL||52||20||1||5||24||0||2||74||9th||146||164||Lost the Quarterfinal to EHC München 2:4 (best of seven series)|
Note: this section includes only statistics accumulated between 1990 and the end of the 2011/12 season.
- "History: All Teams". Eisbären Berlin. Archived from the original on 27 May 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
- "History:Milestones". Eisbären Berlin. Archived from the original on 27 May 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- "History:Milestones". Eisbären Berlin. Archived from the original on 27 May 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- "Eisbären Berlin History" (in German). Eisbären Berlin. 20 April 2011. Archived from the original on 27 May 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- "Eisbären Berlin – GESCHICHTE – ZEITTAFEL". Eisbären Berlin (in German). 20 April 2011. Archived from the original on 27 May 2011. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- "Lightning 4, Berlin Eisbaren 1". 28 September 2008. Archived from the original on 4 March 2016. Retrieved 8 July 2012.
- "Berlin gets hockey title after thriller". Deutsche Eishockey Liga (in German). 19 April 2011. Archived from the original on 23 July 2011. Retrieved 19 April 2011.
- "Eisbären krallen sich die Krone". Deutsche Eishockey Liga (in German). 24 April 2012. Retrieved 25 April 2012.[permanent dead link]
- "O2 World (In German)". Eisbären Berlin. Archived from the original on 15 June 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
- "Zeittafel". Eisbären Berlin. Archived from the original on 27 September 2011. Retrieved 18 April 2011.
- "Eisbären Berlin - Spieler" (in German). www.eisbaeren.de. Retrieved 21 April 2019.
- "Standings for the Berlin Polar Bears of the 1.GBun". Eisbären Berlin. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- "Standings for the Berlin Polar Bears of the DEL". Eisbären Berlin. Retrieved 20 April 2011.
- "All-time roster for the Berlin Polar Bears of the DEL". hockeydb.com. Retrieved 9 July 2012.