CHL, KHL etc.

Kaunisto

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Frölunda HC (aka Indians) wins their fourth CHL championship, beating Czech team Mountfield HK 1-3 in final.
And let me tell you, I haven't often been this happy to see Swedes win! There is a Finnish player in the team, but that's not the reason. The thing is, after complicated back and forth, this final game decided the league ranking between Finland and Czech which in turn decides that next season Finland gets to have 4 teams and Czech only 3. (Germany rises to 4, for first time in the 32-team era.)

Of the six CHL seasons, Swedish teams have now won five (first went to Luleå) and Finnish JYP won one.


Aside the champion, two other teams have been confirmed for next season:

Due system of Austrian (international) League, the actual regular season has already ended, giving one CHL spot to Red Bull Salzburg, playing for 6th time in CHL. Last year they made it to semi-finals as first Austrian team.

Danish SønderjyskE has won Continental Cup, giving them wildcard spot for their 3rd CHL appearance. This means Denmark will be the "challenger" league with two teams next season.


Interestingly this was seventh year on row that Continental Cup winner comes from a different country.
 

Kaunisto

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KHL regular season is over, with no great surprises.
Of the 5 non-Russian teams the usual two, Helsinki Jokerit and Barys Ast... I mean Nur-Sultan, made it to playoffs of 16. Dinamo Minsk and Dinamo Riga were the two bottom teams, while the Chinese team Kunlun Red Star missed playoffs pretty narrowly - typical result for each.
The top teams were last three champions CSKA Moscow, SKA Saint Petersburg and Ak Bars Kazan, followed by Jokerit and Barys.

Playoffs start March 1st.



Some more CHL teams have been decided for next season:
From Austrian international league, their only Italian team HC Bolzano will make their 3rd CHL appearance.
Liberec of Czech and München of Germany lead their leagues enoug to have confirmed 6th CHL appearance for each.
In Swiss league, top 4 is clear, putting Zug, Zürich, Davos and Genève-Servette once again in CHL.

Of the 10 teams decided (out of 32), so far EV Zug and the Swedish reigning champion Frölunda are only ones that have played on all CHL seasons (the upcoming being 7th). Only three more teams can match that:
Tampere Tappara needs to finish in top 3-4 of Finnish league or win playoff title (seems likely)
SC Bern would need to win Swiss league (very unlikely, despite team being reigning champion)
I'm not quite sure because of the unusual system of Austrian league, but I think Vienna Capitals gets to CHL for 7th time if they or one of other qualified teams (Bolzano and Salzburg) win playoff championship (very likely)
 

Kaunisto

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Shenzhen KRS Vanke Rays, Chinese women's team associated with KHL team Kunlun Red Star, has on its first season in Russian Women's Hockey League won the championship, as first non-Russian team.
The team consists of players from China, Canada, US and Finnish national team goalie Noora Räty.
 

Kaunisto

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Jokerit quits KHL playoffs, while the remaining 7 Russian teams are set to continue.
Tbh, facing SKA and likely CSKA in quarter- and semifinals, they probably wouldn't have made it further anyway.


With numerous leagues cancelled before finishing regular seasons, it's a bit unclear how some of CHL teams are decided.
But apparently there'll remain 4 teams that have played all CHL seasons, next being 7th: EV Zug, Frölunda, Tappara and Vienna Capitals.
Next season will have at least 3 first timers: Straubing Tigers (Germany), Rögle (Sweden) and Ilves (Finland) - the old local rival of Tappara.
 

Kaunisto

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Correction to above: there were 6 Russian teams and Barys Nur-Sultan of Kazakhstan - which has now announced quitting their season.
 

Kaunisto

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With almost all leagues now cancelled, nearly all teams have been decided for next CHL season.
Only ones undecided are representative for UK - I assume will be Cardiff Devils, not sure why that's not official? - and champion of Belarus, their playoffs are apparently still continuing, with three teams left. Should HC Shakhtsyor Salihorsk (farm team for KHL Dynamo Minsk) win its semifinal and final, it'd be a fourth first time CHL team on the coming season.

I believe Tappara and Ilves of Tampere are making CHL history as first time two teams of same city play in the league on same season. (Those are currently only teams in Finnish league from same town.)
 

Kaunisto

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With everything else cancelled, I'll just have to follow Belarus league playoffs: Salihorsk (see above post) won semifinal in game 7 against Neman Grodno and meets in final Yunost Minsk.

Reigning champion Yunost has most titles of the league, 8, while Neman Grodno is next with one less. Salihorsk won their only championship 2015 - in the last year before that qualified to CHL so as mentioned above, winning now would men their first appearance in Champions Hockey League next season.

Salihorsk(=Soligorsk) has Finnish goalie Mika Oksa.
 
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