German ice hockey league

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German ice hockey league
Logo of the PENNY DEL

Current season 2020/21
sport ice Hockey
abbreviation DEL
Association German Ice Hockey Federation
League foundation 1994
Teams 14th
Country countries GermanyGermany Germany
Title holder Polar bears Berlin
Record champions Eisbären Berlin (8 titles)
TV partner Magenta Sport , Sport1

The German Ice Hockey League ( DEL ) ( officially PENNY DEL due to sponsorship ) is the top division in German ice hockey . When it was founded in 1994, it was the first German professional league whose game operations were carried out by an operating company and whose clubs outsourced their professional teams to corporations . Today the DEL Betriebsgesellschaft mbH is legally, economically and organizationally independent and an amalgamation of the DEL clubs. The previous league was the ice hockey Bundesliga , which existed between 1958 and 1994 . The DEL record champions are Adler Mannheim and theEisbären Berlin with seven German championships each. The DEL office, the so-called league office, is located in Neuss .

The DEL was the first sports league in Germany to be organized as a corporation. The example of the DEL was later followed by all major German sports leagues with the establishment of the Basketball Bundesliga GmbH in 1996, the DFL German Football League in 2000 or the Handball Bundesliga GmbH in 2004.



In December 1993 the plans to found a new professional league in German ice hockey became official. DEB chairman Ulf Jäkel , DEB sports director Franz Reindl and board members Gottfried Neumann (Augsburg) and Wolfgang Bonenkamp (Düsseldorf) had drawn up plans for this. For this they were on an exploration tour in North America. The National Hockey League should be the sporty, the International Hockey League , in which all clubs were in the black at the time, on the other hand the economic model.

The drafts provided, among other things, to abolish promotion and relegation to the second division. Behind the Düsseldorfer EG , which dominated in the nineties and became German champions four times in a row (1990 to 1993), there were three to four clubs that took a financial risk in order to catch up with Düsseldorf. The rest suffered from massive financial problems and struggled for existence. The second Bundesliga started in the 1993/94 season with eleven (instead of twelve, as planned) clubs, from which SV Bayreuth and later SC Memmingen withdrew from regular play for financial reasons. After the end of the season, the previous second division clubs ECD Sauerland and EHC Essen-West went bankrupt. Professional sport was also offered here (with the exception of EV Landsberg , whose players were semi-professionals), but in reality the second division clubs lacked publicity and therefore lacked money. That is why practically all Bundesliga clubs increased their budgets to avoid relegation. Within two years, the budget of the top division clubs rose by 25% to a total of DM 88.6 million.

Since the clubs could not cover their costs, they sometimes took unusual measures. The champions of the last Bundesliga season Hedos Munich gave up top players like Georg Franz and Wally Schreiber , who had previously waived 10% of their salary. In Mannheim an agreement was reached on a wage waiver of 30%. Together the Bundesliga clubs owed 50 million DM. That is why those responsible planned with only one professional league.


Despite criticism from the clubs from Mannheim, Berlin, Rosenheim and Krefeld, 20 of the 21 remaining first and second division clubs voted in favor of the league reform in mid-January. The operating company “Deutsche Eishockey Liga GmbH” was formed under the umbrella of the DEB. The participating associations founded corporations, which were granted a say by the advisory board. Prerequisites for membership in the DEL were a sensible debt relief concept, an entry fee of 500,000 DM and a secured budget of at least 4.5 million DM. Furthermore, the DEL demanded a stadium suitable for the league and at least 15 contractually bound professional players. The corporations were required to put 10% of the budget aside and to inform the league management regularly about the economic situation. In addition, a central marketer for jerseys, ice cream, gang and television rights was decided, which should reduce the economic disparities within the league.

The management of the newly founded DEL-GmbH was taken over by Franz Reindl and the former manager of Hedos Munich, Franz Hofherr , who were also responsible for the licensing. All first division teams, all remaining second division teams except EV Landsberg and ETC Timmendorfer Strand and ESC Wedemark from the Oberliga Nord applied . For the time being, the license was denied to the two top division clubs as well as EHC 80 Nuremberg , EC Ratingen , ES Weißwasser , BSC Preussen , Eisbären Berlin and the reigning champions EC Hedos Munich. With the exception of the two top division clubs, all clubs fought for a license for the DEL before the DEB arbitration tribunal. The Eisbären and Ratingen showed a considerable debt reduction and Weißwasser a new main sponsor who wanted to invest 1.2 million DM. As the last club, the German champions EC Hedos Munich, which started under the name Maddogs Munich , received the DEL license shortly before the end of the licensing period. On June 20, the 18-team field of participants finally stood.

In the course of the mediatization, the entertainment factor for the audience increased, so LED screens and, in some cases, video cubes were installed. A remix version of the Sirtaki is played as the Opening Face Off Music .

Founding members

Name before the DEL was founded Name for the first DEL season Today's name Placement before the premiere season Today's league
Augsburg EV Augsburg panther Master 2nd BL DEL
EHC Dynamo Berlin EHC Eisbären Berlin 10th place, 1st BL DEL
BSC Preussen Berlin - 4th place, 1st BL -
Düsseldorfer EG German runner-up DEL
Frankfurt ESC Frankfurt Lions Löwen Frankfurt 4th place, 2nd BL DEL2
EC in Hanover Hanover Indians 6th place, 2nd BL Oberliga
EC Kassel Kassel Huskies EC Kassel Huskies 2nd place, 2nd BL DEL2
ESV Kaufbeuren Kaufbeurer eagle ESV Kaufbeuren 8th place, 1st BL DEL2
Cologne EC Cologne Sharks 3rd place, 1st BL DEL
Krefelder EV Krefeld penguins 5th place, 1st BL DEL
EV Landshut 6th place, 1st BL DEL2
Mannheim ERC Adler Mannheim 7th place, 1st BL DEL
EC Hedos Munich Maddogs Munich - German champions -
EHC 80 Nuremberg Nuremberg Ice Tigers 3rd place, 2nd BL DEL
EC Ratingen EC Ratingen "The Lions" - 12th place, 1st BL -
Sports association DJK Rosenheim Starbulls Rosenheim 9th place, 1st BL Oberliga
ES white water ESG Füchse Sachsen Weißwasser / Chemnitz Lusatian foxes 7th place, 2nd BL DEL2
Schwenninger ERC Schwenninger ERC Wild Wings Schwenninger Wild Wings 11th place, 1st BL DEL

Premiere season

The first game of the 1994/95 season took place in the sold-out Curt Frenzel Stadium between the Augsburger Panthers and the Maddogs Munich, which Munich won 6-1. The first bully was carried out by guests of honor Bobby Hull and Paul Ambros . The other games on the first day of the match were also well attended, with a total of 45,000 spectators in the halls.

After the successful start, the DEL got into a crisis on Boxing Day. The reigning master from Munich filed for bankruptcy. The admissions committee had given the Maddogs the license subject to conditions and demanded guarantees from the board members, which were ultimately of no value. On February 18, 1995 DEB President Ulf Jäkel was voted out of office and resigned from his post. Two inconsistencies in particular were chalked up against him: A company in which Jäkel himself was involved took on controlling in the DEL and another company from Jäkel's home town of Kaufbeuren created the first DEL logo.

Some NHL players like Brendan Shanahan (Düsseldorf), Pawel Bure (Landshut), Scott Young (Landshut and Frankfurt), Robert Reichel (Frankfurt), Doug Weight (Rosenheim), Uwe Krupp (Landshut), Glenn Anderson (Augsburg) or Vincent Damphousse (Ratingen) bridged the lockout of the NHL in the DEL and provided positive sporting news. Finally, the Kölner Haie with coach Bob Murdoch , who came from Munich after the bankruptcy, prevailed in the play-offs and became the first DEL champions.

The 1995/96 season began with a dispute between the new DEB President Rainer Gossmann , who also campaigned for the small and amateur clubs, and the spokesman for the DEL clubs, Bernd Schäfer III from Cologne . This wanted to separate the league even further from the association. That is why he planned to found the National Ice Hockey League (NEL) as the successor to the DEL and received approval from many DEL club headquarters. The continued existence of the DEL was only secured through the involvement of the world association IIHF , which declared the NEL to be a wild league with no rights.

The Bosman decision and its consequences

The Bosman decision of the European Court of Justice of December 15, 1995 enabled the clubs in the DEL to become active again on the transfer market. Players from EU countries were no longer included in the two (from 1995/96: three) foreigner quota. Above all, the later play-off finalists from Cologne and Düsseldorf strengthened their squads. In the final of the 1996 play-offs, the Düsseldorf team prevailed in the Rhine derby after four games against the Haie.

Before the 1996/97 season , the Bosman decision was a decisive factor in the composition of the squad. The clubs were able to significantly reduce their personnel costs because the German players now had competition from all over the EU. In the 1996/97 season, 97 EU foreigners played in the DEL. On the other hand, the frequent changes of players, including during the season, also led to a decline in the number of spectators. The Bosman decision was primarily an opportunity for the smaller clubs. The Kassel Huskies and Eisbären Berlin advanced to the top of the league in the 1996/97 season, while the German champions from Düsseldorf missed the play-offs, which began with the quarter-finals (previously: the second round). In contrast to practically all other DEL clubs, Landshut signed few EU foreigners and still relied more and more on German forces.

The surprise team of the season were the Kassel Huskies, who fought their way to the finals and failed against Adler Mannheim. Their manager Marcus Kuhl and trainer Lance Nethery brought players from less strong ice hockey nations (Italy, France, Austria) who wanted to prove themselves in the DEL and were the first to complete the main round.

Separation between league and association and dominance of the eagles

The dispute between the DEL clubs and the DEB escalated during the 1996/97 season. Bernd Schäfer III had meanwhile been declared DEL managing director when the association admitted economic problems. Then had the franchise -Vertrag before DEL arbitration no longer exist, and under pressure from the IIHF agreement was reached on the independence of the DEL, with the Taurus group of Leo Kirch was able to even make a new television contract. The relationship between DEL and DEB as the umbrella organization was laid down in a first cooperation agreement.

In the years to come, Adler Mannheim continued to dominate the league, which drove in calmer waters than a year earlier. Mannheim's dominance was only ended in 1999/2000 with the quarter-finals against the Kassel Huskies. Successful coach Lance Nethery switched to the Kölner Haien before the season and immediately led them to the final, in which they lost to the Munich Barons of US billionaire Philip Anschutz . Before the season, after advertising by Bernd Schäfer III, Anschutz took over the license of the financially weakened Landshut Cannibals and moved to Munich.

In 2001 the Adler again won the final of the German championship against the defending champion from Munich.

In the 2001/02 season , the goal pursued since the founding of the DEL was achieved for the first time that it belonged to exactly the same teams in both seasons. This required a high financial outlay: shortly before the start of the season, due to licensing and financial problems, the Berlin Capitals initially only had nine players in the squad, so they were fined more than 100,000 euros and six minus points. In Schwenningen and Essen, fans made donations to ensure the continued existence of DEL ice hockey at their locations. After a mixed main round including a change of coach, the sixth, the Kölner Haie, became German champions after the play-offs in 2002. Rich Chernomaz and his team defeated the surprise team from Krefeld, the feared opponent Munich and the Etat-Krösus Mannheim in the final. Also in 2002/03 the table sixth won the championship title. In the end, the Krefeld Penguins were the best of the league, which was reduced to 14 teams. The Hamburg Freezers, formerly Munich Barons, reached the play-offs only three minutes before the end of the last game day with an equalizer from Ted Drury against the Frankfurt Lions and pushed past the second surprise team of the season, the Iserlohn Roosters , who against Krefeld won 8: 1 at the same time. Frankfurt was defeated in the play-downs against the beaten bottom Schwenningen with 2: 4 after games. However, due to the bankruptcy of Wild Wings, they remained in the DEL.

One season later, the Frankfurt Lions celebrated the championship. Berlin was first after the main round, but lost to the Lions (fifth in the preliminary round) in the final. The young Nuremberg team finished second after the main round and then dropped out in the quarter-finals.

The era of multifunctional arenas

Multifunctional arenas in the DEL (for the 2013/14 season)
Home club capacity
Cologne deutz kölnarena.jpg Lanxess Arena
October 17th, 1998
Cologne Sharks 18,500
Mercedes-Benz Arena Berlin August 2015.JPG Mercedes-Benz Arena
September 10, 2008
Polar bears Berlin 14,200
SAP Arena.jpg SAP Arena
September 2, 2005
Adler Mannheim 13,600
ISS Dome Düsseldorf street view.jpg ISS Dome
September 2, 2006
Düsseldorfer EG
(until 2012 as DEG Metro Stars)
Color Line Arena.JPG Barclaycard Arena
November 8, 2002
Hamburg Freezers 12,947
ArenaNuernbergerVersicherung.JPG Arena Nürnberger Versicherung
February 1, 2001
Nuremberg Ice Tigers 8,228
KönigPALAST.jpg Royal Palace
December 4th 2004
Krefeld penguins 8,029
Saturn Arena.JPG Saturn Arena
October 3, 2003
ERC Ingolstadt 4,681

With the Revierlöwen Oberhausen in 1997/98 the first team took the step into a new era in the DEL. So the team moved to a multifunctional arena , the Arena Oberhausen . These arenas are characterized by the fact that they are subject to a change in use within a short period of time and can therefore assume different functions, which increases the profitability of these venues.

Other clubs followed this model and also moved into modern large arenas. In 1998 the Kölner Haie moved to the Kölnarena - today's Lanxess Arena  - and thus owned the largest arena of all DEL clubs, while the City of Nuremberg built a new home for the Ice Tigers in 2001 with the construction of the Nürnberger Versicherung Arena . The Preussag Arena was opened in Hanover on the occasion of EXPO 2000 , in which the Hanover Scorpions played part of their home games from 2001 to 2004. From February 2004 the arena became the home ground of the Hannover Scorpions and in 2005 it was renamed TUI Arena . These three arenas formed the center of the 2001 Ice Hockey World Championship in Germany as venues.

The Finnish entrepreneur Harry Harkimo opened the Color Line Arena in Hamburg in 2002 , and the Munich Barons from team owner Philip F. Anschutz , who did not get a new hall for his team in Munich and therefore cooperated with Harkimo, moved to Hamburg and became the Hamburg Freezers and so the main tenant of the Color Line Arena . On September 2, 2005, the opening of the SAP Arena in Mannheim took place, which served the Adler Mannheim as a replacement for the now ailing ice rink at Friedrichspark . With the inauguration of the Düsseldorf ISS dome on September 2, 2006, the fifth DEL team now used a multifunctional arena with a capacity of at least 10,000 spectators as its home ground.

As the latest project, Anschutz had the O 2 World Berlin , the new home for the polar bears, built in Berlin with 14,200 seats, making it the second largest arena in the German ice hockey league. Eight of the 16 teams from the highest German ice hockey league are now playing in a multifunctional arena.

The move to these arenas also had a positive effect on the league's audience development. The average number of visitors from the 1999/2000 season grew from 4,414 viewers in the course of the next few years to around 6,000 viewers, which has stabilized at this average in recent years. In a European comparison, the league took third place in 2012, behind the Swiss National League A and the Swedish Elitserien and ahead of the Continental Hockey League .

In addition, the Lanxess Arena and the SAP Arena were the venues for the 2010 Ice Hockey World Championship .

After the main round in 2018/19, the DEL was able to generate an average of 6,215 spectators and was thus in third place in Europe behind the KHL (6,397) and the NL (6,949) and ahead of the SHL (5,828).

NHL shine in German halls

Marco Sturm played for ERC Ingolstadt during the 2004/05 NHL lockout

Ten years after the first lockout , the NHL players were 2,004 locked out again from their league. These then went on strike, which some players in the DEL bridged. The Iserlohn Roosters started with the signing of Mike York and the national players Marco Sturm , Jochen Hecht and Olaf Kölzig also played in the DEL. ERC Ingolstadt and Adler Mannheim in particular benefited from the lockout by licensing four and five NHL players, respectively. The champions from Frankfurt secured the services of Stéphane Robidas at the beginning of the season and also signed Doug Weight during the year . Both were instrumental in helping the Lions finish the main round first. Jochen Hecht was the top scorer of the playoffs and NHL representative Erik Cole of the Eisbären Berlin was voted the most valuable player in the playoffs. Cole also won the championship title with the polar bears.

Use of professional referees

The engagement of professional referee Rick Looker from the USA caused discussions in the 2005/06 season . He was the first foreign referee in the DEL and was at the same time one of the most controversial referees among the DEL clubs. After the 2009/10 season Looker ended his engagement in the DEL. For the 2006/07 season , Looker were provided with additional professional referees in the form of Frank Awizus and Daniel Piechaczek . Awizus later retired from his career for health reasons. On January 1st, 2009 Georg Jablukov received a contract as a professional referee in the DEL.

In 2011, the previous national ice hockey player Lars Brüggemann became a professional referee for the DEL and was the third contract referee at that time.

Early end of the 2019/20 season due to the coronavirus epidemic

On March 10, 2020, the German Ice Hockey League announced that the 2019/20 season had ended prematurely due to the coronavirus epidemic . Since playoffs were no longer possible at the end of the season, there was no champion in the 2019/20 season. It was the first season of the DEL in which there was no champion. The DEL2 also ended their season prematurely after the pre-playoffs.

Mode and starting field

Timeline of the clubs in the German Ice Hockey League
94/95 95/96 96/97 97/98 98/99 99/00 00/01 01/02 02/03 03/04 04/05 05/06 06/07 07/08 08/09 09/10 10/11 11/12 12/13 13/14 14/15 15/16 16/17 17/18 18/19 19/20 20/21
AEV Augsburg panther
Polar bears Berlin
Prussia Berlin Capitals
Fischtown Pinguins Bremerhv.
Duisburg foxes
Düsseldorfer EG DEG DEG Metro Stars Düsseldorfer EG
Mosquitoes eating
Frankfurt Lions
Munich Barons Hamburg Freezers
EC Hannover
Wed. Hanover Scorpions Schwenninger Wild Wings
ERC Ingolstadt
Star Bulls Rosenheim Iserlohn Roosters
Kassel Huskies Huskies
Kaufbeurer eagle
Cologne Sharks
KEV Krefeld penguins
EV Landshut Landshut cannibals Munich Barons
Adler Mannheim
EV Landshut Munich Barons Hamburg Freezers
EHC EHC Red Bull Munich
EHC Nuremberg Ice Tigers Sinupret Ice Tigers Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers NIT
Ratinger Löwen Territorial lions Oberhausen
EHCR R. lions Territorial lions Oberhausen
Starbulls Rosenheim Iserlohn Roosters
SERC Schwenninger Wild Wings Hanover Scorpions Schwenninger Wild Wings
Straubing Tigers
GAW Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg Grizzlies Wolfsburg

↓ relegation
→ license purchase / sale / relocation

Participants in the DEL 2018/19
Black pog.svgmultifunctional arena   Blue pog.svgLarge MF arena   Red pog.svgice rink

In their first two years, 18 teams played in the DEL. After a preliminary round in which everyone met once in their own hall and once away from all other clubs, the league was divided into three regional groups (west / north, center, south) with six teams each, which was once again a single round with each other. After these 44 games, the first 16 teams in the table were qualified for the play-offs. Due to the early withdrawal of the MadDogs Munich, who were replaced by SC Riessersee in the 1996/97 season , the Eisbären Berlin were the only team whose season ended after the main round.

In that second season, a single round was played first, in which each team played twice against each other. After these 34 games, the league was no longer subdivided according to regional criteria, but the teams that were in the even places played a single round among themselves and those in the uneven places as well. Then the play-offs began again with the round of 16.

For the 1996/97 season, the league was reduced by two teams to 16 teams. The SC Riessersee, EC Hannover and the Füchse Sachsen retired from the league and with the Wedemark Scorpions only one successor was determined. The preliminary round, which was again played as a single round, was shortened to 30 games. This was followed by the championship round for the best six teams, in which the play-off order was played, and the remaining teams fought in the qualifying round for the other two finals places. The teams that were third to tenth in the qualifying round played in the play-downs. After a quarter-final and a semi-final, the losers had to compete in a relegation round against the two best teams in the second-highest division. The play-offs began this season with the quarter-finals.

The relegation round was immediately abolished in the following year. Instead, the top 8 of the qualifying round played the remaining two final round participants in pre-play-offs. Kaufbeuren's license was withdrawn during the preliminary round, which is why the Starbulls Rosenheim were represented in the qualifying round, but not in the pre-play-offs.

After two seasons again, the DEL was reduced to 14 teams in 1998/99, since in addition to Kaufbeuren, the Düsseldorfer EG also voluntarily relegated and thus anticipated a license withdrawal. This season was the first time a double round was played, so that each team had two home and two away games against all other DEL clubs. This time, play-offs that began with the quarter-finals followed.

For the 1999/2000 season, Moskitos Essen added to the DEL starting field. This did not change the mode, as a double round with subsequent play-offs continued. The teams that missed the play-offs experienced a change. They played a relegation round, the bottom of which (Essen) should be relegated, but still remained in the league. Instead, the Starbulls Rosenheim withdrew due to financial difficulties. Their license was sold to the Iserlohn Roosters . In addition, the Düsseldorfer EG moved back up to the DEL.

Therefore, a 16-player league was formed again in 2000/01, which started the season with a double round (60 games). This was followed by the quarter-finals of the play-offs. The 2001/02 season was held with the same starting field. The mode was changed with the introduction of play-downs to determine who was relegated. The first team to hit was Berlin Capitals , who were replaced by newly promoted ERC Ingolstadt .

In 2002/03, the DEL returned to a league with 14 teams, as the mosquitoes food and the Revierlöwen Oberhausen were deprived of their license. Furthermore, the play-offs with the quarter-finals followed the double round, which was not changed in 2003/04. The play-downs were also played in both seasons. In 2003 the Wölfe Freiburg rose from the second division and took the place of the Schwenninger Wild Wings (license revocation). In their first DEL season, the wolves were defeated in the play-downs and therefore had to make way for Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg . These stayed in Germany's top division for a year until their license was revoked and the Füchse Duisburg rose. The last sporting relegation for the time being were the Kassel Huskies, who lost the play-downs in 2006 and were replaced by the Straubing Tigers . The play-off mode remained unchanged.

In the 2006/07 season, the pre-play-offs were introduced. The first six teams in the main round are therefore directly qualified for the play-offs. The teams in places seven to ten determine the two remaining play-off participants in a qualifying round. The play-downs have been abolished.

With the rise of the Grizzly Adams Wolfsburg in 2007 and the Kassel Huskies in 2008, the league was increased to 16 teams. The number of games in the main round was reduced to 52 games per team in 2008/09. In addition, the clubs were divided into four groups according to their placement in the previous year; Within the groups, the teams play against each other once, otherwise twice. The planned introduction of relegation games with the 2nd Bundesliga was postponed because it was not possible to agree on a common mode with the ESBG.

With the elimination of the Füchse Duisburg , the number of participants was reduced to 15 teams after the 2008/09 season, which played a double round with 56 games in the 2009/10 season. The 2010/11 season was carried out with 14 teams (the Frankfurt Lions and Kassel Huskies retired due to refusal of the license for economic reasons and the rise of the EHC Munich ) and thus 52 games in a complete double round.

In November 2009, the DEL clubs agreed to play all play-off rounds with the exception of the qualification from the 2010/11 season on, following the North American model, in the " best-of-seven " mode. Previously, different modes were used depending on the round. The play-off qualification will continue to be played in best-of-three mode. In July 2010 this new regulation was canceled. This means that the play-offs from the quarter-finals onwards will be played in the "Best of Five" mode. For the 2011/12 season, the mode for the play-offs was changed slightly again. The quarter-finals will now be played in the "Best of Seven" mode. Since the 2013/14 season , the quarter-finals, the semi-finals and the final of the play-offs have been played in the "Best of Seven" mode.

season Teams Main round Number of games Play-off participants Relegation regulation
1994/95 18th Single round with regional groups 44 16 -
1995/96 One and a half round 50
1996/97 16 Single round, then:
championship round (6 teams, 2 ×),
qualifying round (10 teams, 1 ×)
48/50 8th Play-down (8 teams), relegation
1997/98 14th -
1998/99 14th Double round 52 8th
1999/2000 15th 56 Relegation round
2000/01 16 60 -
2001/02 Play-down (2 teams)
2002/03 14th 52
2006/07 10 -
2007/08 15th 56
2008/09 16 1.75 times round 52
2009/10 15th Double round 56
2010/11 14th 52
2020/21 Single round with regional groups 38 8th suspended due to COVID-19
2021/22 Direct descent of the main lap last

Successful clubs

German champion

See also: German champions (ice hockey)

Master statistics

society title year
Polar bears Berlin 8th 2005, 2006, 2008, 2009, 2011, 2012, 2013, 2021
Adler Mannheim 7th 1997, 1998, 1999, 2001, 2007, 2015, 2019
EHC Red Bull Munich 3 2016, 2017, 2018
Cologne Sharks 2 1995, 2002
ERC Ingolstadt 1 2014
Hanover Scorpions 1 2010
Frankfurt Lions 1 2004
Krefeld penguins 1 2003
Munich Barons 1 2000
Düsseldorfer EG 1 1996

Eternal table

The eternal table is led by Adler Mannheim according to points. Only regular season games are taken into account for the table. The DEL clubs in the current season 2018/19 are yellow highlighted.
Abbreviations: Sz = seasons, Sp = games, S = wins, U = draws, N = defeats, pts = points, T = goals scored, GT = goals conceded

Item society Sz Sp S. U N T GT Pt title participation
1 Adler Mannheim 24 1260 737 27 496 4186 3455 2110 7th since 1994
2 Cologne Sharks 24 1260 702 21 537 3957 3396 2054 2 since 1994
3 Polar bears Berlin 24 1260 684 26th 560 4180 3814 2013 7th since 1994
4th Nuremberg Ice Tigers 24 1254 659 38 557 3932 3656 1953 0 since 1994
5 Krefeld penguins 24 1254 619 33 602 3928 3792 1801 1 since 1994
6th Düsseldorfer EG 22nd 1150 605 11 534 3441 3275 1690 1 1994–1998, since 2000
7th Augsburg panther 24 1254 555 27 672 3760 4196 1621 0 since 1994
8th ERC Ingolstadt 16 840 436 13th 391 2537 2382 1336 1 since 2002
9 Iserlohn Roosters 18th 960 424 7th 529 2767 3009 1302 0 since 2000
10 Hanover Scorpions 17th 900 405 13th 482 2688 2921 1231 1 1996-2013
11 Frankfurt Lions 16 842 433 20th 389 2647 2537 1225 1 1994-2010
12th Hamburg Freezers 14th 736 379 10 347 2172 2107 1147 0 2002-2016
13th Grizzlies Wolfsburg 12th 632 320 10 302 1890 1710 979 0 2004/05, since 2007
14th Kassel Huskies 14th 732 337 23 372 2099 2195 960 0 1994-2006, 2008-2010
15th Schwenninger Wild Wings 14th 726 288 19th 419 2137 2446 816 0 1994–2003, since 2013
16 Straubing Tigers 12th 632 256 7th 369 1669 2023 779 0 since 2006
17th EHC Red Bull Munich 8th 416 235 0 181 1276 1089 706 3 since 2010
18th BSC Preussen / Preussen Devils / Berlin Capitals 8th 416 216 20th 180 1433 1257 567 0 1994-2002
19th EV Landshut 5 242 152 11 79 922 605 352 0 1994-1999
20th Munich Barons 3 176 113 0 63 560 446 331 1 1999-2002
21 Territorial lions Oberhausen 5 272 103 4th 165 776 977 289 0 1997-2002
22nd Star Bulls Rosenheim 6th 296 107 18th 171 902 1146 284 0 1994-2000
23 Mosquitoes eating 3 176 59 0 117 464 650 180 0 1999-2002
24 Duisburg foxes 4th 212 58 0 154 509 847 171 0 2005-2009
25th Fischtown Pinguins Bremerhaven 2 104 47 0 57 290 325 139 0 since 2016
26th Kaufbeurer eagle 3 142 42 16 84 449 661 108 0 1994-1997
27 Ratinger lions 3 142 39 10 93 419 628 94 0 1994-1997
28 EC in Hanover 2 94 25th 8th 61 258 428 59 0 1994-1996
29 ESG Füchse Sachsen Weißwasser 2 94 17th 8th 69 215 418 46 0 1994-1996
30th SC Riessersee 1 50 16 4th 30th 147 213 37 0 1995/96
31 Maddogs Munich 1 27 17th 1 9 110 84 36 0 1994
32 Wolves Freiburg 1 52 11 0 41 142 241 34 0 2003/04
Status: after the 2017/18 season .


From 1994 to 1997/98 there were two points for a win and one point for a defeat after extra time. Since the 1998/99 season there are three points for a win in regular time, two points for a win after overtime or a shootout and one point for a loss after overtime or a shootout.

Six clubs (Mannheim, Cologne, Eisbären Berlin, Nuremberg, Krefeld, Augsburg) took part in all 24 DEL seasons. The different number of games is explained by the staging of championship and qualification rounds in the seasons 1996/97 and 1997/98 .

The Ratinger Löwen moved to Oberhausen in 1997 and was renamed Revierlöwen Oberhausen. In the same year the renaming of the Wedemark Scorpions in Hanover Scorpions took place. From a legal point of view, the Ratinger Löwen and Revierlöwen Oberhausen as well as the Wedemark Scorpions and Hannover Scorpions are each to be understood as a club. The license of EV Landshut went to the newly founded Munich Barons in 1999, who moved to Hamburg in 2002 and renamed themselves Hamburg Freezers. All three DEL teams played with the same license and are considered the same GmbH. Likewise, the Star Bulls Rosenheim license went to Iserlohn Roosters in 2000 and the Hannover Scorpions license and limited liability company to Schwenningen in 2013.

The Maddogs Munich withdrew their team in the 1994/95 season after the 27th matchday. All outstanding games were rated with 0-0 goals and one point for the respective opponent.

Successful players

All statistics are correct after the 2018/19 season and also take play-off games into account.

Top scorer
player Games Gates Assists Points
Daniel Kreutzer 1060 270 529 799
Robert Hock 888 249 537 786
Patrick Reimer 893 340 382 722
Michael Wolf 782 337 321 658
Thomas Greilinger 843 285 358 643
Top goal scorers
player Games Gates Assists Points
Patrick Reimer 893 340 382 722
Michael Wolf 782 337 321 658
Thomas Greilinger 843 285 358 643
Sebastian Furchner 995 278 286 564
Daniel Kreutzer 1060 270 529 799
Top template provider
player Games Gates Assists Points
Robert Hock 888 249 537 786
Daniel Kreutzer 1060 270 529 799
John Chabot 435 127 394 532
Daniel Pietta 741 191 391 582
Patrick Reimer 893 340 382 722
Record player
player Games Gates Assists Points
Mirko Lüdemann 1197 175 363 538
Nikolaus Mondt 1060 94 225 319
Daniel Kreutzer 1060 270 529 799
Patrick Köppchen 1025 39 249 288
Sebastian Furchner 995 278 286 564
Top goalkeeper
player Shutouts Average goal conceded
Felix Brückmann 25th 2.23
Danny from the birches 46 2.33
Chris Rogles 29 2.35
Andrei Trefilow 22nd 2.37
Gustaf Wesslau 16 2.40
Penalty minutes
player Penalty minutes
Sven Felski 1806
Daniel Kreutzer 1548
Tomáš Martinec 1540
Robert Leask 1534
Mike Stevens 1401
Mirko Lüdemann is the record player with 1197 DEL appearances
Daniel Kreutzer (right) holds the DEL points record with 799 points
Felix Brückmann has the best goal average with 2.23

Committees and organization

The highest DEL decision-making body is the shareholders' meeting, in which the clubs each have one vote. In these meetings, the DEL management (managing director has been attorney Gernot Tripcke since May 2000) and the following commissions are elected to support the management in the respective area of ​​responsibility:

Supervisory Board 1) Legal and Economic Commission Media and Marketing Commission
Jürgen Arnold , Chairman
( ERC Ingolstadt )
Daniel Hopp , Deputy Chairman
( Adler Mannheim )
Wolfgang Brück
( Iserlohn Roosters )
Lothar Sigl
( Augsburger Panther )
Jan Kienappel, Chairman
( Eisbären Berlin )
Wolfgang Brück
( Iserlohn Roosters )
Torsten Hofmann
( EHC Red Bull Munich )
Michael Huber
( ERC Ingolstadt )
Klaus Sturm
( Eisbären Berlin )
Hiltrud D. Werner
( Grizzlys Wolfsburg )
Moritz Hillebrand, Chairman
( Eisbären Berlin )
Leo Conti
( Augsburger Panther )
Wolfgang Gastner
( Nürnberg Ice Tigers )
Rupert Zamorsky
( EHC Red Bull Munich )
Philipp Walter
( Kölner Haie )
1) advising and controlling in addition to the management

Cooperation with DEB and DEL2

Since an amendment to the DEB statutes in April 2015, the DEL clubs have been members of the DEB. In addition, there is a cooperation agreement with the DEB, which regulates the joint promotion of young talent, the passport and referee system, as well as international representation. This means that the DEL is also recognized by the International Ice Hockey Federation and the German Olympic Sports Confederation .

There is also a cooperation agreement with DEL2 . From 2020/21 there will be promotion and relegation between the two leagues.


League sponsors

When the DEL was founded in 1994, the Krombacher Brewery was a league sponsor who was also integrated into the DEL logo at the time. The brewery ended its involvement after two years. In 2003, the Yellow Pages Marketing Gesellschaft mbH took over the league sponsorship with the Yellow Pages . In each hall of the DEL, some advertising areas such as the kick bar (lowest part of the board) and an under-ice area in the middle third were reserved for the yellow pages. In addition, the helmets of the referees bore the corresponding logo. In addition, there is a double logo DEL / Yellow Pages, which could be seen on every club website. In March 2006, Telefonbuchverlag extended its sponsorship contract until 2009. After six years as the main sponsor, GelbSeiten Marketing Gesellschaft mbH announced an extension of its sponsorship commitment at the DEL in December 2009. For a further three years they were committed as an official premium partner. The kick bars in all arenas of the DEL continued to have the “Yellow Pages” logo. As of January 2013, the sports betting provider CASHPOINT was the league's new main sponsor. For the 2014/15 season, X-TiP, again a sports betting provider, became the main sponsor. From the 2016/17 season, Covestro became the new main sponsor of the DEL.

In addition, the companies Azimut (hotel partner ) and Europcar (mobility partner and sponsor on the referee's jerseys) are sponsoring partners of the DEL. The WestLB supported by the " WestLB Fair Play Trophy " DEL. After the season, the team that has been awarded the fewest penalties receives a bonus of 10,000 euros for promoting young talent.

The DEL website was sponsored by the yellow pages and also by ea-sports until 2016/17 and was renamed with the entry of Deutsche Telekom as a partner. For the 2017/18 season, the URL was used again.

In July 2020 the name of the league was changed to "PENNY DEL" as part of a partnership with the discounter PENNY . Penny is the league's first name sponsor, and the league's logo has been adapted accordingly, so the Penny-Markt GmbH logo can now also be found there.

Logo history

Moving image rights

The first television contract closed the DEL 1994 with the Pay TV transmitter premiere . After independence from the association in 1996, the DEL switched to its premiere competitor DF1 . This merged in 1999 with Premiere to Premiere World , from 2009 Sky Germany . The DEL's pay-TV rights were held by Sky until 2012. Most recently, at least two games were broadcast weekly in the main round; In the play-offs, at least one game was broadcast in each round, and all games from the semi-finals.

To this end, games were broadcast on free-to-air German sports television (DSF, today Sport1 ) until 2003 . From 2009 to 2012. Games were isolated over the free TV transmitter euro sport broadcast, in the 2011/12 season for the last time eight games. Game summaries have been broadcast on the league's own Internet platform DEL TV since the 2005/06 season. ARD , ZDF , the third programs, ProSiebenSat.1 Media , n-tv and some regional broadcasters have post-exploitation rights, with picture material being supplied by the DEL.

From 2012 to 2016 the DEL was broadcast on the Austrian private broadcaster Servus TV . A Sunday game was shown live on Servus TV, along with excerpts from the other games on the day of the match. On Fridays, broadcast games via live stream.

Since the 2016/17 season, Deutsche Telekom has held the media rights from the DEL for four seasons, plus an option for four more years until 2023/24. For this, Telekom pays one million euros per season. All league games can be viewed via MagentaTV with the Magenta Sport option and via live stream on Magenta Sport. In April 2016, Sport 1 acquired the free TV rights from Deutsche Telekom and will broadcast them in cooperation with Telekom Entertain until 2020 .

Name sponsorship

Since the introduction of the DEL in 1994, when many teams gave themselves animal names, the Frankfurt ESC has been named after a chocolate bar sponsored by Nestlé ( Lions ). On March 1, 2002, Metro AG was also presented as a name sponsor to Düsseldorfer EG , after the club had previously been exposed to constant burdens from high old debts. The team played under the name DEG Metro Stars until the end of the 2011/12 season . The Nürnberg Ice Tigers appeared as Sinupret Ice Tigers in the 2006/07 and 2007/08 seasons , making them the first DEL club to completely dispense with the place name. Between May 2009 and May 2020 the team started under the name Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers. EHC Munich has been operating as EHC Red Bull Munich since 2012, and in 2013 Red Bull also took over EHC Munich Spielbetriebs GmbH.


In addition to the normal league game operations, the DEL occasionally organized an all-star game and, together with the ESBG and the DEB, the German ice hockey cup .

DEL Winter Game

The idea for such an event comes from the North American NHL Winter Classic , which has been played once a year on January 1st or 2nd in an American football or baseball stadium since 2008 . The first DEL Winter Game took place on January 5, 2013 in the sold-out Nuremberg Stadium in front of 50,000 spectators, which was a new European record for an ice hockey league game. The local Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers competed against the record champions Eisbären Berlin (final score 4: 3). The second Winter Game on January 10, 2015 was just slightly better attended with 51,125 spectators. In the Düsseldorf Arena the defeated DEG the Cologne Sharks 3: 2nd

The third edition of the Winter Games took place on January 7, 2017 in the Rhein-Neckar-Arena in Sinsheim between the Schwenninger Wild Wings and the Adler Mannheim (final score 3: 7). In 2019 there was a fourth event on January 12th, this time the Kölner Haie and the Düsseldorfer EG met in the Cologne stadium (final score 2: 3).

All-star game

The DEL All-Star Game was first played in Frankfurt in 1998. This event, in which a selection of the best European DEL players competed against the best North Americans in the usual format, took place annually. From 1998 to 2006 the German national ice hockey team played against the best foreigners in the league. In addition to the friendly game, a number of other activities took place at the venue, such as the so-called “Skills Competition” (competitions to determine the fastest skaters, most puck-proof players etc.) and an autograph session. The North Americans won the last all-star game so far on January 31, 2009 in Berlin with 9: 8 goals against Team Europe.


In cooperation with DEL and ESBG, a cup competition was held from 2002 onwards.

The abolition of this competition was considered several times because it was considered unattractive by some DEL clubs because many games take place during the week and the competition has no sporting added value. Despite the application of the Hamburg Freezers in November 2007 to suspend the cup competition in the 2008/09 season , this was carried out in the same season with a slightly different mode. For the 2009/10 season, the participation of the DEL clubs was suspended due to the Olympic Games in Vancouver and the World Cup in their own country. From 2010 to 2013 the cup was played without the participation of DEL teams.


In cooperation with Deutsche Telekom , the DEL will start the first official virtual ice hockey league in November 2019. The game is played on the PlayStation 4 with the video game NHL 20 .

The eDEL initially organizes so-called qualification tournaments in which the best 16 players are selected. These took place weekly from November 2019. The tournaments are held in the classic knockout system. The winners of the individual tournaments will receive prizes provided by Telekom, the DEL clubs and the league company, and will also be able to participate in the eDEL playoffs . Further prizes go to the second and third place, as well as a randomly drawn participant.

In the playoffs, the best four players will then be played, who were then invited to the offline final tournament. The playoffs took place in best-of-3 mode .

On March 1, 2020, during the game between the Kölner Haien and the Straubing Tigers , the eDEL winner was played out between three players. In this offline tournament, Tim " Timasy " Hess was crowned the first eDEL champion.


  • Patrick Reichelt: Super League DEL. The chronicle of the German Ice Hockey League . AGON Sportverlag, Kassel 2004, ISBN 3-89784-247-2
  • Patrick Bernecker: Titles, goals, tears: the history of a league . Copress Verlag, Munich 2004, ISBN 3-7679-0876-X .
  • Frank Bröker: Ice hockey in Germany. Nothing for weak nerves. Verlag Andreas Reiffer, 2013. ISBN 978-3-934896-93-2 .

Web links

Commons : German Ice Hockey League  - Collection of images, videos and audio files

Individual evidence

  1. DEL goes “First to PENNY”. In: German Ice Hockey League. Retrieved July 7, 2020 .
  2. ↑ The organizational heart of the DEL now in Neuss. (PDF; 3.1 MB) In: Gewerbe-Post. P. 15 , accessed on February 21, 2018 .
  3. easyCredit - structure. In: . Retrieved February 22, 2019 .
  4. Success story with a run-up: The history of the DFL. In: . Retrieved February 22, 2019 .
  5. DKB Handball Bundesliga - historical data. In: . Retrieved February 22, 2019 .
  6. WELT ONLINE: " Arena at Ostbahnhof is now called O2-World "
  7. viewer development DEL ( Memento from January 31, 2012 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on April 24, 2009.
  8. DEL audience development over the past 6 years. Archived from the original on September 27, 2010 ; Retrieved April 4, 2013 .
  9. European audience statistics 2012
  10. Ice Hockey News from March 19, 2019, page 4
  11. Rick Looker in the criticism ( memento from September 26, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on April 24, 2009.
  12. Frank Awizus becomes a professional referee in the DEL , accessed on March 27, 2013.
  13. Daniel Piechaczek becomes third professional referee , accessed on March 27, 2013.
  14. DEL: Georg Jablukov new professional referee. In: August 25, 2010, accessed December 10, 2015 .
  15. DEL professional referee nominated for the World Cup ( memento from June 12, 2010 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on April 24, 2009.
  16. Ex-professional Brüggemann becomes professional referee , accessed on April 7, 2013.
  17. Süddeutsche Zeitung: DEL: Ice hockey season ended due to corona virus. Retrieved March 10, 2020 .
  18. German ice hockey league ends season prematurely. Retrieved March 10, 2020 .
  19. Focus Online , DEL: New season, new play-off mode
  20., DEL rolls backwards in play-off mode
  21., Der Modus der DEL 2011/12 , accessed on September 12, 2012.
  22. Special edition of the ice hockey news for the DEL season 2012/13
  23. 15 games are not included in the rating due to the disqualification of the Kaufbeurer Adler .
  24. league office - organs of the League society. In: . DEL, accessed April 1, 2021 .
  25. DEL confirms supervisory board - Lothar Sigl new on the board. In: . DEL, March 10, 2018, accessed January 23, 2018 .
  26. -zr-10069071.html
  27. Press release Sutter Telefonbuchverlag: " A strong team goes into the next third ( Memento from March 7, 2007 in the Internet Archive )" from March 29, 2006.
  28., Yellow Pages extends sponsorship commitment at the German Ice Hockey League , accessed on January 13, 2013.
  29., CASHPOINT new main sponsor of the DEL ( Memento from January 8, 2013 in the Internet Archive ), accessed on January 13, 2013.
  30. DEL goes “First to PENNY”. July 7, 2020, accessed July 7, 2020 .
  32. DEL TV ( Memento from August 1, 2012 in the web archive )
  34. Deutsche Telekom becomes the new DEL media partner. In: Official website of the DEL ( ). January 27, 2016, accessed January 27, 2016 .
  35. SPORT1 GmbH acquires media rights: DEL until 2020 LIVE on SPORT1. In: Sport1. April 5, 2016, Retrieved April 5, 2016 .
  36. Florian Bässler: The history of ice hockey in Frankfurt. (No longer available online.) In: July 8, 2014, archived from the original on December 14, 2015 ; Retrieved December 10, 2015 .
  37. Thomas Sabo: Nuremberg's ice hockey patrons say goodbye. Retrieved April 1, 2021 .
  38. Winter Game: Nuremberg beats the champion. kicker , January 13, 2013, accessed January 5, 2019 .
  39. DEG cheers: Record broken, Derby won. kicker , January 10, 2015, accessed January 5, 2019 .
  40. DEL Winter Game - Adler Mannheim win against Schwenningen in Hoffenheim's football arena . January 7, 2017 ( [accessed December 18, 2017]). DEL Winter Game - Adler Mannheim win against Schwenningen in the Hoffenheim football arena ( Memento from October 22, 2017 in the Internet Archive )
  41. Kölner Haie demand Düsseldorf: 44,000 tickets for DEL winter game sold in Cologne. kicker , January 4, 2019, accessed January 5, 2019 .
  42. Ice hockey cup competition before the end. Retrieved November 28, 2007 .
  43. " DEB-Pokal and All-Star-Match will be suspended next season "
  44. " DEL starts its own eSports league: eDEL "
  45. Erik Scharf: Tim Hess from Bad Nauheim is a German ice hockey champion., March 4, 2020, accessed on March 4, 2020 .
This version was added to the list of articles worth reading on May 2, 2007 .