|Current season, competition or edition:
2016–17 Metal Ligaen season
|No. of teams||10|
|Most titles||Herning (16)|
|TV partner(s)||TV2 Sport|
Metal Ligaen is the premier league in Danish ice hockey. The league consists of 10 professional teams. The name of the league has changed many times, but is being sponsored by Dansk Metal and therefore got the name Metalligaen.
It is also known as Superisligaen or Eliteserien, which is the name used in the past and in times where no naming rights agreement is in place. On January 1, 2014 Danish Metal (Dansk Metal) became the sponsor of the Danish ice hockey league, which changed the name to Metal Ligaen, replacing the previous name AL-Bank Ligaen which was named for the sponsorship deal with the Danish bank Arbejdernes Landsbank.
The Danish Icehockey league has become one of the better leagues in Europe, often compared to leagues such as the Swedish HockeyAllsvenskan and the DEL2. The league is more of a springboard for foreign players and a place to start their European careers, before traveling to other bigger leagues such as the Swedish Hockey League or DEL. The teams rely mostly on foreign talent, but there is still a lot of skilled professional Danish players. It is mostly the older Danish players, who are full-time professional. Most younger players are semi-professional because of the tight economy in Danish hockey and most of the money is spend on more talented foreign players.
In the past, the league has consisted of as many as 10 teams. Despite the introduction of a salary cap as well as a limit to the number of import players allowed, several teams have struggled financially in recent years. As a result, the Herlev Hornets and the Rungsted Cobras have withdrawn from the league, reducing the number of active teams from 10 to 8. Teams from the second tier league were offered the empty spots, but no team were able to accept the offer, citing financial issues as their main concern.
n January 9, 2015 TV2 Sport debuted as a new sports channel on Danish TV. Same day, HockeyNight also aired for the first time, with a match between Odense Bulldogs and Rungsted. Since 2015 TV2 Sport has been the place to watch icehockey and other sports.
On June 18, 2016 it was made clear that the foreign player limit of 8, was against EU law and it was therefore removed. The 2016-17 season will be the first time, since 2009, that a Danish icehockey team can have an unlimited amount of foreign players. The salary cap was created to regulating the league. The salary cap of the 2016-17 season, is 6 million DKK.
The league consists of 10 teams. The latest expansion was in 2014, when Gentofte Stars joined the league after being relegated in 1999. The league format has changed many times. The current structure was implemented in the 2011-12 season. Often it is changed compared to how many teams that are represented in the league. There has never been more than 10 teams in the Danish icehockey league, making it fairly small structured league compared to other leagues in Europe.
The Danish hockey league is structured so that every team meet 5 times, making the seasons after 2014, 45 games long. The season typically starts in September and ends in February. The top 8 teams of the regular season makes the playoffs. First place gets to pick who they want to play in the quarterfinals. second place pick next and so on. The Metalligaen playoffs consists of 3 rounds: quarterfinals, semifinals and the finals.
The Metal Cup is a tournament held every year. It consists of 12 teams, where all Metalligaen teams are represented. also 2 teams from the 1.division attends. The top 4 teams the year before will go straight to the quarterfinals. The 8 other teams will by draw be divided into 4 groups each one of them with letter. 4 teams will advance on from first round to the quarterfinals. In the quarterfinals the last seasons champs will play winner of group A. second-place winner of group B and so on. games in the quarterfinals and semifinals consists of two games. The winner of the tournament will receive the Metal Cup.
Teams for 2015–16 season
|Aalborg Pirates ||Aalborg||1967||Gigantium||5000||2007|
|Esbjerg Energy ||Esbjerg||1964||Granly Hockey Arena||4200||1976|
|Frederikshavn White Hawks ||Frederikshavn||1964||Scanel Hockey Arena||4000||2015|
|Gentofte Stars ||Gentofte||1996||Gentofte Skøjtehal||1160||1975|
|Herning Blue Fox ||Herning||1947||KVIK Hockey Arena||4100||1988|
|Herlev Eagles ||Herlev||1968||DFDS Seaways Arena||1740||1977|
|Odense Bulldogs ||Odense||1978||Bryggeriet Vestfyens Arena||3280||1999|
|Rungsted Ishockey ||Rungsted||1941||Hørsholm Skøjtehal||2460||1971|
|Rødovre Mighty Bulls ||Rødovre||1964||Rødovre Skøjte Arena||3600||1995|
|SønderjyskE Ishockey ||Vojens||1963||SE Arena||5000||2011|
Teams formerly in league
|Copenhagen Hockey||Hvidovre / Copenhagen||2011||Hvidovre Skøjtehal||2000||1979|
List of notable players who have played in the Danish icehockey league.
- "Farvel til udlændingeloftet i dansk ishockey – Faceoff.dk". www.faceoff.dk. Retrieved 2016-07-10.
- "Liga-klubber får tildelt egenkapital frem til 2019 – lønloft stadig seks millioner – Faceoff.dk". www.faceoff.dk. Retrieved 2016-07-10.
- "Aalborg Pirates". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Esbjerg Energy". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Frederikshavn White Hawks". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Gentofte Stars". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Blue Fox Herning". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Herlev Eagles". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Bulldogs Odense". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Rungsted Ishockey". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "Rødovre Mighty Bulls". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.
- "SønderjyskE". al-bankligaen.dk. Retrieved 2013-11-12.