EC Graz 99ers
|Moser Medical Graz99ers|
|history||founded in 1999|
|Location||Graz , Styria , Austria|
|Club colors||black, orange|
|league||Erste Bank Ice Hockey League|
|Venue||Ice rink Graz-Liebenau|
|executive Director||Bernd Vollmann|
|Head coach||Doug Mason|
|Season 2019/20||4th place (main round)
5th place (placement round)
The Moser Medical Graz99ers are an Austrian ice hockey team from Graz ( Styria ). The club was founded in 1999 after the previous club, the EHC Graz , had to stop playing during the 1998/99 season due to financial difficulties. The Graz 99ers started in the 1999/2000 season in the National League , where they became champions straight away. They have been playing in the Bundesliga since the 2000/01 season .
Ice hockey at Bundesliga level was played in Graz primarily by two predecessor clubs: The ice hockey section of the ATSE Graz (Arbeiter- Turn- und Sportverein Eggenberg) was founded in 1947 and was the only Graz ice hockey club to date to win the Bundesliga championship title in the seasons 1974/75 and 1977 / 78. The association was merged with the UEC Graz at the beginning of the nineties, from which the EC Graz emerged shortly afterwards. In 2008, the ice hockey section of the ATSE Graz was activated again at the league level.
The GAK also had an ice hockey section from 1926 to 1935 and from 1953 to 1976. The GAK came in 1962 as regional league champions in the 3rd division, in 1967 in the second division and with the Oberliga title in 1970 for one season in the Bundesliga, but had to relegate immediately. 99ers founder and president Jochen Pildner-Steinburg was already active as a youth player at the GAK with his brother (there also a successful tennis player, partly member of the state league team), captain and later also section head.
The EC Graz (also called "the elephants") experienced its heyday under President Hannes Kartnig , but was able to achieve the title of runner-up “only” three times in the seasons 1991/92 , 1992/93 and 1993/94 despite high financial expenditure . After the departure of Hannes Kartnig, who moved to the football club SK Sturm Graz , attempts were made to save EC Graz. When this project failed in 1998, the EHC Graz was founded with Helmut Bocskay as president. In the 1998/99 season, however, EHC had to stop playing.
Foundation and promotion to the Bundesliga
In 1999, Jochen Pildner-Steinburg founded the Graz 99ers as the successor club of EC Graz in order to be able to offer Bundesliga ice hockey again in the Styrian capital. The team premiered in the second highest division, the National League, and was in first place in the table after 28 rounds of the regular season. In the semifinals, the team prevailed after an opening defeat with 3-1 wins against EHC Lustenau and met EK Zell am See in the final . The series reached its preliminary climax in the fourth game: the first goalkeeper Markus Schilcher was out with angina , substitute goalkeeper René Vallant was injured with a score of 3-2 for the Graz team, and young goalkeeper Bernd Brückler was unable to counter the attacks of the Zeller Eisbären . So the game was lost 4: 6. Schilcher took over his post again in the decisive game. After twenty minutes, Graz were down 2-0. After a goalless middle third, Helmut Karel turned the game around with a hat trick and shot the 99ers to the championship. The Graz team then took the opportunity to be promoted to the Bundesliga.
Years of apprenticeship in the Bundesliga
The team was strengthened over the summer around the pillars of the first season, but it did not have a smooth start to the championship. Some defeats were also joined by problems with the signed legionnaires, but the team's performance stabilized and the 99ers established themselves in the middle of the table. Before the last round, a home game against HC Innsbruck , it was still possible to reach fourth place, but this chance was missed. According to the current mode, the Graz team competed in the quarter-finals against the first-placed EC KAC and lost the series without a win. The season ended in sixth place (out of ten participating teams).
The second season in the top division was similar. Once again, the team placed in the middle of the table after a failed start, but did not manage to push the Vienna Capitals from fourth place in the end. Shortly before the end of the basic round, coach Mike Shea asked to terminate his contract. Peter Znenahlik took over as coach and led the team into the quarter-finals against the Viennese, which were again lost without a win in four games with some significant defeats.
In the following season, the 2002/03 season, the 99ers first placed in the front half of the table. In the course of the season, some players were injured, which caused problems due to a lack of squad. Swedish defender Calle Johannson has been replaced by Rumun Ndur , who has a reputation for delivering hardship when his teammates got into trouble. There was no long-term success, and Peter Znenahlik passed his coaching position to Ken Tyler . The team's performance gradually stabilized, but in the end the Graz team finished the regular round in seventh and penultimate place. In the quarter-finals, the team met HC Innsbruck and lost the best-of-five series in three games. So it was the 99ers in three playoff appearances and ten games failed to bring in a win.
For the first time at the top of the table
In the 2003/04 season , the 99ers succeeded from the first game to form a team unit. In addition, Ivo Jan , Warren Norris , Jeremy Rebek and later Dave Chyzowski were excellent legionnaires who consistently scored goals. Halfway through the regular season, the Graz team were in first place in the table, but they fell back a little when Ivo Jan was out for six weeks after an appendix operation and left a large gap in the storm. In the end, the 99ers managed to finish fourth and qualified for the playoffs. In the semifinals it went against table leaders EC KAC, and again the team was eliminated in three games without a win.
The 2004/05 season was a battle for a playoff place for the Graz team. After an injury to Jamie Mattie , who was replaced by Christopher Bartolone , the team lost cohesion and lost eight games in a row, which the team slipped far back in the table. When Mattie had recovered from the injury, the 99ers had the option of signing off their top scorer Conny Strömberg in order to fill the defensive with Mattie. At the end of the regular round, a four-way battle for the fourth and last two playoff places developed. The final fixture of the season, a home game against EC KAC, required a win to secure the quarter-finals, but the game was lost in the shootout and the 99ers ended the season with no playoff participation.
The sporting descent of the 99ers began with the 2005/06 season . Mainly responsible for this was a series of injuries, which mainly affected key players. This series culminated on November 15, 2005, when Warren Norris lay motionless on the ice after a cross check from Patrick Harand . Respiratory paralysis and concussion were diagnosed. Norris survived thanks to the quick help of the paramedics of the Austrian Red Cross , who carried out the emergency medical care while on the ice, and was then absent for several weeks. His replacement Steve Washburn was allowed to appear after Norris had recovered, but for coach Mike Zettel the season ended prematurely due to the series of defeats. Bill Stewart took over the Graz team at a time when they were lagging behind in last place. A game had to be canceled and penalized as the 99ers could no longer provide a competitive squad.
With Mike Bullard a new coach was committed for the 2006/07 season , and a large number of the legionnaires were replaced. After a decent start, however, the 99ers slipped into a series of defeats again. Mike Bullard was fired and Jim Brithén took over the team after several weeks of looking for a coach at a time when it was not much more than the league's whipping boy. Even he failed to stabilize the performance of the 99ers, and so assistant coach Mike Shea led the season to a close. The goalkeepers were swapped just as quickly as the coaches without any improvement. After Steve Passmore had been replaced by Pavel Nešťák with a goal average of 4.58 and a catch rate of only 87.75% , Walter Bartholomäus took over the position until the end of the championship, which was again finished in last place.
Extensive changes were made again for the 2007/08 season . With Larry Sacharuk , a trainer was hired to develop a long-term concept for the 99ers. Some legionnaires were exchanged, and with the return of Ivo Jan , more successful times should be built on. For the first time in a long time, the goal was to rely on a purely Austrian solution with Claus Dalpiaz (who had been released from HC Innsbruck ) and Bernhard Bock from Salzburg . After a narrow opening win, the second game in Vienna was lost 8-1. It subsequently became apparent that Sacharuk was by no means able to develop a real concept, and the consequence was again an early release. Tom Pokel took over the vacant position after some legionnaires who had not met expectations had to leave the club and was now faced with the task of leading the team into the top six. From ninth place (only league newcomer Alba Volán Székesfehérvár had a worse record) it went into the qualifying round, where however the second newcomer and later runner-up HDD Olimpija Ljubljana and HC Innsbruck remained insurmountable hurdles.
After the third failed season in a row, two of the fan clubs, the "Grazer Elefants" and the "Uhrturmfront", left their sails and switched to the revived ATSE Graz , which was to contest its first season in the major league in the 2008/09 season.
Jochen Pildner-Steinburg decided again for a complete restart in the 2008/09 season . This time the goal was to hire a coach who on the one hand already knew the Austrian league and on the other hand had some successes. With Bill Gilligan , who won four series championships with the EC KAC in the eighties, they found what they were looking for. Gilligan again replaced some of the legionaries, but was able to keep some key players and strengthen the team in a targeted manner. Although this time they stayed in the lower half of the table, but after some starting problems, the 99ers came together in December 2008 and also won a few games against the favored teams. At the end of the regular season, the team was eighth in the table and was qualified for the playoffs for the first time since the 2004/05 season. In the quarter-finals, Graz met the Vienna Capitals and lost their first game away 6-0. On February 19, 2009, the 99ers won an encounter in the playoffs at the Graz-Liebenau ice rink for the first time since they were promoted to the Bundesliga and beat the Viennese 2-1. This was followed by two narrow defeats, which resulted in a score of 1: 3 in the best-of-seven series. The Grazers achieved their second win in the series with an away win and then equalized in the series at home. In the end, the team lost in the decisive game in Vienna.
Bill Gilligan built on that small success and decided to break new ground with the 99ers. For the 2009/10 season , a number of well-known Austrian players could be signed, which formed a practically completely new framework for the squad. There were also some good quality transfer card players. In conjunction with the improved squad depth and a largely injury-free season, this meant that the 99ers completed the main round in first place for the first time in the club's history. In the quarter-finals, the elimination followed when the team lost to eighth table KHL Medveščak Zagreb with 2: 4 wins .
In the following season, the Graz team fell back into mediocrity and only finished the basic round in sixth place. The quarter-finals brought a winless elimination against the Vienna Capitals. Bill Gilligan then ended his engagement after three years of coaching due to lack of success. The former Salzburg assistant coach Mario Richer took over his position. After Mike Ouellette (Linz) left, several new players were signed: Dustin Van Ballegooie and the former Jesenice striker Brett Lysak both moved from the Danish club SønderjyskE Ishockey to Mur, Rodi Short was brought on by the national league champions VEU Feldkirch, and Toni Dahlman from the Augsburger Panthers from the DEL. With Artiom Konovalov a young goalkeeper of the EC Red Bull Salzburg has been signed. Sébastien Bisaillon (Hamilton Bulldogs, AHL), Olivier Latendresse (SC Bietigheim-Bissingen, 2nd Bundesliga) and Guillaume Lefebvre (Bakersfield Condors, ECHL) added to the ranks of transfer card players. The Czech Zdeněk Blatný (previously HC Dukla Trenčín) came to Graz for a tryout and was later firmly committed. In the 2011/12 season , however, the play-off could not be reached.
After Frédéric Cloutier had distinguished himself as the second strongest goalkeeper in the league in the regular season, his contract was extended for 2012/13 . This season the Graz team were able to reach third place in the main round and move directly into the play-off, where they were eliminated in the quarter-finals against eventual champions EC KAC. This time Frédéric Cloutier was only able to establish himself in the midfield of the league, while Olivier Latendresse stood out as the top scorer of the 99ers.
For the 2013/14 season , the squad was redesigned and among others Francis Lemieux , Ryan Kinasewich and Andy Sertich signed , while it came to the departure of Cole Jarrett , Ryan Lannon and Jean-Michel Daoust . As a new goalkeeper Dany Sabourin was brought out of the American Hockey League . This turned out to be a stroke of luck, but Graz could not qualify for the play-off.
In the 2014/15 season , the Graz team ran under the new head coach Todd Bjorkstrand , who was released in October 2015 due to a lack of success. Once again, the 99ers did not make it into the play-off after finishing the main round in 9th place and qualification in 3rd place.
Under new coach Ivo January was started in the season 2015/16 . The new goalkeeper was the Dane Sebastian Dahm , while Kyle Beach and Evan Brophey, two former Salzburg strikers, were signed. But this season was still before the play-offs, after the Graz team had only reached 10th place in the main round and could not prevail in the qualification either.
Since Sebastian Dahm had established himself as the strongest goalie in the main round of the league in the 2015/16 season with a save rate of 93.1%, he was left in the squad for 2016/17 , as were Kyle Beach and Evan Brophey. Oliver Setzinger , whose contract with EC KAC had been terminated prematurely, was signed as the new team captain . On December 15, 2016, the separation from Ivo Jan was announced and Doug Mason was signed as the new head coach . Before this change, there had been ten defeats in eleven games under Jan's leadership, the 99ers were third from bottom of the table. The Graz team were able to fight their way back to 8th place in the main round and won the qualifying round with two points ahead of Orli Znojmo. Graz moved back into a playoff for the first time since the 2012/13 season.
Graz was picked for the quarter-finals by EC Red Bull Salzburg.
Squad of the 2020/21 season
As of August 19, 2020
|No.||Nat.||player||Item||Date of birth||in the team since||place of birth|
|33||Ben Bowns||G||January 21, 1991||2020||Rotherham , England|
|35||Felix Nussbacher||G||December 7, 1999||2019||Graz , Austria|
|73||Mario Altmann||D.||4th November 1986||2020||Vienna , Austria|
|92||Charlie Dodero||D.||October 1, 1992||2019||Bloomingdale , Illinois , USA|
|15th||Amadeus Egger||D.||November 29, 1999||2017||Graz , Austria|
|98||Lukas Färber||D.||July 9, 1998||2018||Graz , Austria|
|71||Erik Kirchschläger||D.||4th February 1996||2018||Linz , Austria|
|77||Philipp Lindner||D.||July 13, 1995||2019||Innsbruck , Austria|
|72||Kevin Moderer||D.||February 8, 1990||2018||Graz , Austria|
|29||Joel Broda||C.||November 24, 1989||2020||Yorkton , Saskatchewan , Canada|
|54||Tony Cameranesi||C.||August 12, 1993||2020||Plymouth , Minnesota , USA|
|Hunter Fejes||LW||May 31, 1994||2020||Anchorage , Alaska , USA|
|26th||Dominik Grafenthin||W.||June 27, 1995||2019||Berlin , Germany|
|19th||Lukas Kainz||C.||September 2, 1995||2018||Mödling , Austria|
|89||Clemens Krainz||F.||May 30, 2001||2018||Zell am See , Austria|
|9||Parker MacKay||RW||June 10, 1994||2020||Irma , Alberta , Canada|
|74||Daniel Oberkofler||C.||July 16, 1988||2017||Graz , Austria|
|18th||Ken Ograjenšek||RW||August 30, 1991||2016||Celje , Slovenia|
|11||Travis Oleksuk||C.||3rd February 1989||2018||Thunder Bay , Ontario , Canada|
|80||Julian Pauschenwein||F.||February 6, 2001||2018||Graz , Austria|
|17th||Johan Porsberger||RW||June 20, 1993||2020||Ostersund , Sweden|
|27||Kilian Rappold||F.||May 2, 2002||2019||Austria|
|91||Oliver Setzinger||C.||July 11, 1983||2016||Horn , Austria|
Well-known former players
(Team membership and position in brackets)
Participation of players on the All-Star-Team
|2006/07||Tommy Jakobsen , Greg Day , Stefan Herzog , Robert Guillet|
|2007/08||Stefan Pittl , Greg Day|
|2001/02||Peter Znenahlik||Engelbert Lindner|
|2002/03||Martin Krainz , Stefan Hofer||Rumun Ndur , Werner Kerth , Michael Pollross|
|2003/04||Michael Pollross||Roland Schurian , Gilbert Kühn|
|2004/05||Martin Krainz||Jeremy Rebek , Gilbert Kühn|
|2005/06||Jeremy Rebek||Roland Schurian , Sean Selmser|
|2006/07||Tommy Jakobsen||Jiri Hala , Harry Lange|
|2007/08||Tommy Jakobsen||Patrick Mössmer|
|2009/10||Harry Lange||Christoph Harand , Florian Iberer|
|2011/12||Cole Jarrett||Toni Dahlman , Sven Klimbacher|
|2012/13||Cole Jarrett||Guillaume Lefebvre , Matthias Iberer|
|2013/14||Olivier Latendresse||Guillaume Lefebvre , Kevin Moderer|
|2014/15||Olivier Latendresse , later Anders Bastiansen||Kevin Moderer , Stefan Lassen|
|2015/16||Philipp Pinter||Kevin Mitchell , Stephen Werner|
|2016/17||Oliver Setzinger||Daniel Oberkofler , Robin Weihager|
|2017/18||Oliver Setzinger||Kurtis McLean , Daniel Woger|
|Champion team of the national league season 1999/2000|
|goal||Markus Schilcher, René Vallant, Bernd Brückler|
|defense||Gruber Gerd, Norbert Havasi, Philipp Hofer, Florian Iberer, Chris Rozanski (USA), Pirre Persson (SWE), Mike Shea|
|Storm||Herbert Diamant, Stefan Hofer, Christian Hofmeier, Bernd Jäger, Stefan Janisch, Helmut Karel, Peter Knaus, Petri Kujala (FIN), Ingo Preiss, Peter Preiss, David Pretterhofer, Thomas Stadler, Peter Znenahlik, Gilbert Kühn|
The U20 team (internal Moser Medical Graz 99ers U20 ) has been playing in the Austrian U20 league since 2011 ( EBYSL since 2012 ). The head coach is Harald Antalovic.
Coach of the 99ers
- Miroslav Berek : 1999/2000 (national league champion )
- Mike Shea : 2000 – January 2002
- Manfred Nitsch: January 2002 – February 2002 (youth coach 99ers)
- Peter Znenahlik: February 2002 – January 2003
- Ken Tyler: January 2003 - end of season 2002/2003
- Mike Zettel: 2003–23. November 2005
- Bill Stewart : November 2005-March 2006
- Mike Bullard : April 2006-26. October 2006
- Peter Znenahlik: on an interim basis until November 2, 2006
- Mike Shea: on an interim basis from November 2, 2006
- Jim Brithén : November 13, 2006-22. January 2007
- Mike Shea: January 22, 2007 - end of the 2006/07 season
- Larry Sacharuk : from 2007 / 08–5 season. December 2007
- Mike Shea: on an interim basis from December 5, 2007
- Tom Pokel : December 11, 2007 - end of the 2007/08 season
- Bill Gilligan : March 2008 – 2010/11 season end
- Mario Richer : May 2011 - October 23, 2013
- Petri Matikainen : October 23, 2013 - end of the 2013/14 season
- Todd Bjorkstrand : from 2014/15 season - October 5th, 2015
- Ivo Jan : from October 5, 2015 - December 15, 2016
- Doug Mason : as of December 15, 2016
The Graz 99ers play their home games in the Graz-Liebenau ice rink with a capacity of around 4,050 spectators , which fans also refer to as a “ bunker ” due to its construction with the saddle-shaped roof and windowless exterior walls . Characteristic of the hall are the soaring spectator stands located only on one side and the covered forecourt, which serves as a meeting point for fans during the breaks and also has drinks stands.
The 99ers had three big fan clubs until after the 2007/08 season : the “Grazer Elefants” (founded in 1991 as a fan club of the then EC Graz ), the “Grazer Oranjes” and the “Lions”, as well as the “Uhrturmfront”, which started in 2005 was founded and was a sub-faction of the Grazer Elefants. Due to the re-establishment of the ATSE Graz , however, the “Uhrturmfront” and the “Elefants” switched to the ATSE in 2008.
Since the 2014/15 season there has been another active fan club, the Styrian Panthers , which has since established itself as the largest fan club of the Graz 99ers.
The Graz Oranjes dissolved their fan club before the 2015/16 season, leaving Graz with just two fan clubs, the Styrian Panthers with around 150 members and the Lions with around 60 members (as of March 2017).
Statistics and records
Note: up to the 2006/07 season, points were shared after the half-way point in the regular season. However, the absolute points scored for the regular season are given for the relevant seasons. Bonus points from the intermediate rounds are also not taken into account.
|1999/2000||28||25th||3||0||151: 64||+87||50||1||9||6th||3||0||41:25||+16||National league champion & promotion to the Bundesliga|
|2000/01||36||17th||17th||2||113: 139||−26||36||5||3||0||3||0||4:12||−8||Quarter-final out, rank 6|
|2001/02||32||13||14th||5||99: 114||−15||31||5||4th||0||4th||0||4:15||−11||Quarter-final out, rank 5|
|2002/03||42||14th||25th||3||111: 181||−70||31||7th||3||0||3||0||7:18||−11||Quarter-final out, rank 7|
|2003/04||48||25th||20th||3||141: 147||−6||53||4th||3||0||3||0||4:10||−6||Semi-final out, 4th place|
|2004/05||48||24||18th||6th||152: 147||+5||54||5||-||-||-||-||-||-||5th place, no playoff participation|
|2005/06||48||15th||27||6th||119: 171||−52||36||7th||-||-||-||-||-||-||7th place, no playoff participation|
|2006/07||56||11||38||7th||163: 254||−91||29||8th||-||-||-||-||-||-||Rank 8, no playoff participation|
|2007/08||42||16||19th||7th||108: 151||−43||39||9||-||-||-||-||-||-||Out after qualifying round, rank 9|
|2008/09||54||24||24||6th||124: 154||−30||54||7th||7th||3||4th||0||12:20||−8||Quarter-final out, rank 7|
|2009/10||54||36||13||5||197: 132||+65||77||1||6th||2||2||2||15:19||−4||Quarter final out|
|2010/11||54||27||23||4th||164: 153||+11||58||6th||4th||0||3||1||9:16||−7||Quarter final out|
|2011/12||48||23||22nd||3||130: 141||−11||49||10||-||-||-||-||-||-||Rank 10, no playoff participation|
|2012/13||54||27||18th||9||162: 157||+5||63||5||5||1||4th||0||9:16||−7||Quarter final out|
|2013/14||54||24||22nd||8th||144: 159||−15||56||10||-||-||-||-||-||-||Rank 10, no playoff participation|
|2014/15||54||24||23||7th||147: 152||−5||55||10||-||-||-||-||-||-||Rank 10, no playoff participation|
|National league||28||25th||3||0||151: 64||+87||50||-||9||6th||3||0||41:25||+16|
|EBEL||724||320||323||81||2074: 2352||−278||721||-||35||6th||26th||3||64: 126||−62|
S = victories, N = defeats in regular playing time, NNV = defeats after extra time or penalty shootout, victory% = percentage of the total possible points scored, TVH = goal difference
Statistics since the promotion to the Bundesliga in the 2000/2001 season. All preliminary rounds / playoff games are included.
- 2003/2004 season: 2,784 spectators
- 2004/2005 season: 3,148 spectators
- 2005/2006 season: 2,375 spectators
- 2006/2007 season: 2,016 spectators
- 2007/2008 season: 2,097 spectators
- 2008/2009 season: 1,813 spectators
- 2009/2010 season: 2,593 spectators
- 2015/2016 season: 2,092 spectators
- Season 2016/2017: 2,344 spectators
- 2017/2018 season: 2,258 spectators
- 2018/2019 season: 3,071 spectators
- Graz 99ers | TRAINER TEAM RELEASED WITH IMMEDIATE EFFECT. In: www.99ers.at. Retrieved December 15, 2016 .
- grazer-elefants.at: Grazer Elefants support ATSE
- www.99ers.at: Our fan clubs , accessed on March 7, 2017
- Homepage of the ÖEHV ( Memento from January 31, 2009 in the Internet Archive )