Tipsport liga (hockey)
The Slovak Tipsport Liga (Slovak Extraliga) is the highest-level ice hockey league in Slovakia. Since the 2018–19 season, the league also includes two teams from Hungary. In 2009, it was ranked by the IIHF as the fifth strongest league in Europe and in 2012, it was ranked by The Hockey News as the sixth-strongest league in the world behind the NHL, KHL, Swedish Hockey League, SM-liiga and Czech Extraliga. However, it has dropped significantly since then, with the American Hockey League, Swiss National League, German DEL and Austrian EBEL, among others, all now ranked ahead.
|Current season, competition or edition:|
2019–20 Slovak Extraliga season
|Formerly||Czechoslovak First Ice Hockey League|
|CEO||Richard Lintner |
|No. of teams||13|
|HC '05 Banská Bystrica|
|Most titles||HC Slovan Bratislava & HC Košice (both 8 titles)|
|TV partner(s)||RTVS (Slovakia)|
|Relegation to||Slovak 1. Liga|
|Slovak 1. Liga|
Slovak 2. Liga
The name of the league is leased to sponsors and changes frequently. From 1993/94 to 1997/98, it was called Extraliga, then the name changed to West Extraliga until the end of the 2000/01 season. In 2001/02, its name was Boss Extraliga. From the 2002/03 season to 2004/05, the name was ST Extraliga and in 2005/06 to T-Com Extraliga. On 16 January 2007, the name changed to Slovnaft Extraliga when a general sponsorship agreement with Slovnaft was signed, in 2011/12 it became the Tipsport Extraliga and Slovnaft-Play-off, and since the 2015/16 season it has been called the Tipsport liga and Slovnaft-Play-off.
The Slovak Extraliga is rooted in the Czechoslovak Extraliga. The 1993/94 season was the first for the Slovak Extraliga after Czechoslovakia split into the Czech Republic and Slovakia on 1 January 1993.
Each regular season Tipsport liga game is composed of three 20-minute periods, with an intermission of a maximum of 18 minutes between periods. If the game is tied following the 60-minute regulation time, a five-minute three-on-three sudden death overtime period is played. If a game still is tied after the overtime period, a shootout decides the game. In a shootout, the team that scores the most penalty shots out of five attempts wins the game. If the game is still tied after the first five penalty-shot rounds, the shootout continues round by round, until one team scores while the other team fails to score.
|HC Košice||Košice||Steel Arena||8,378|
|HC Nové Zámky||Nové Zámky||Nové Zámky Ice Stadium||2,500|
|HC Slovan Bratislava||Bratislava||Ondrej Nepela Arena||10,055|
|HC '05 Banská Bystrica||Banská Bystrica||Banská Bystrica Ice Stadium||2,841|
|HC 07 Detva||Detva||Detva Ice Stadium||1,800|
|HK Dukla Trenčín||Trenčín||Pavol Demitra Ice Stadium||6,150|
|HK Nitra||Nitra||Nitra Arena||3,600|
|HK Poprad||Poprad||Poprad Ice Stadium||4,500|
|HKM Zvolen||Zvolen||Zvolen Ice Stadium||5,372|
|MHK 32 Liptovský Mikuláš||Liptovský Mikuláš||Titan Arena||3,680|
|HK Dukla Michalovce||Michalovce||Michalovce Ice Stadium||4,000|
|DVTK Jegesmedvék||Miskolc||Miskolc Ice Hall||2,000|
The Tipsport liga season is divided into a regular season from late September through the beginning of March, when teams play against each other in a pre-defined schedule, and a playoffs from March to April, which is an elimination tournament where two teams play against each other to win a best-of-seven series in order to advance to the next round. The final remaining team is crowned the Slovak champion, or Slovenský majster in Slovak, and receives the Trophy Vladimíra Dzurillu.
The regular season is a round-robin, where each team plays 55 games. Points are awarded for each game, where three points are awarded for winning in regulation time, two points for winning in overtime or shootout, one point for losing in overtime or shootout, and zero points for losing in regulation time. At the end of the regular season, the team that finishes with the most points is crowned the league champion. The six highest-ranked teams by points qualify directly for the playoffs. The four teams ranked 7–10 play a best-of-five series and battle for the two remaining playoff spots. The lowest ranked team after the regular season have to play in a relegation series called PlayOut together with best team from the second tier league Slovak 1. Liga. The two teams battle to win a best-of-seven series of PlayOut qualify for the next Tipsport liga season. Before the 2018–19 season, the eight highest-ranked teams qualified for the playoffs.
If two or more teams end up tied in points, the seeds are determined by the following tiebreaker format:
- Head-to-head points
Starting in the 2018–19 season, the four teams ranked 7–10 in the regular season play a best-of-five series, known as Play In, and battle for the two remaining playoff spots. The 7th-ranked team faces the 10th-ranked team, and the 8th-ranked team faces the 9th-ranked team. The 7th-ranked team and the 8th-ranked team receive home-ice advantage and play three of the five games at their home venue in their series if necessary to determine a winner of the series. The winners of the two best-of-five series take the two remaining playoff spots.
The Tipsport liga playoffs is an elimination tournament, where two teams battle to win a best-of-seven series in order to advance to the next round. In the first round of the playoffs, or the quarterfinals, the top seed faces the lowest-ranked winner of the two best-of-three series (eighth seed, ninth seed or tenth seed); the 2nd-ranked seed faces the other winner of the two best-of-five series; the 3rd-ranked seed faces the 6th-ranked seed; and the 4th-ranked seed faces the 5th-ranked team. In the second round, the semifinals, the teams are re-seeded, with the top remaining seed playing against the lowest remaining seed, and the other two remaining teams pairing off. In the third round, the finals, the two remaining teams face each other.
In each series, the higher-ranked team of the two will have home-ice advantage. Four of the seven games are played at this team's home venue – the first and second, and, when necessary, the fifth and seventh games – with the other games played at the lower-ranked team's home venue.
The lowest ranked team after the regular season have to play in a relegation series called PlayOut together with best team from the second tier league Slovak 1. Liga. The two teams battle to win a best-of-seven series of PlayOut qualify for the next Tipsport liga season.
Names and sponsorshipEdit
|2002–2005||ST Extraliga||Slovak Telekom|
Previous Tipsport liga regular season winnersEdit
Previous Tipsport liga playoff winners (Slovak Champions)Edit
- "VIDEO: Potvrdené, dva kluby z Maďarska rozšíria slovenskú Tipsport ligu". Retrieved 14 June 2018.
- "Russian league tops first CHL ranking". Archived from the original on 5 January 2010. Retrieved 3 November 2009.
- "PRAVIDLÁ ĽADOVÉHO HOKEJA" (PDF) (in Slovak). Slovak Ice Hockey Federation. Retrieved 7 March 2018.
- "Nová sezóna premiérovo s maďarskými účastníkmi, adepti na titul si v lete udržali kľúčových hráčov" (in Slovak). 3 September 2018. Retrieved 3 September 2018.