Hockey Forum resolutions

Euro stakeholders committed to find solution to main issues

26.06.2012
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The 2012 Hockey Forum was an event to build on for the stakeholders in European ice hockey. Photo: Martin Merk

ZURICH – Collected and put forward by the 2012 Hockey Forum Observer & Recommendations Group, discussed and accepted by a wide majority of the participants.

Hockey in Europe has reached a tipping point. In a fragmented landscape, clubs want more games; national teams want to protect their dates, and players are being asked to extend their abilities to the limit. We must consider quality over quantity, and we must consider taking a little bit away from all stakeholders to produce a stronger game at all levels and in all forms.

EUROPEAN CLUB COMPETITION
  • Parallel structure is the favoured format. i.e., European Club competition is added to the existing national leagues program and played alongside the domestic league.
    • Sportive quality ensures overall quality over quantity
    • Teams must qualify for events and are not merely invited (open system, not closed)
    • It ensures the existence of strong national leagues, which are the backbone of national programs and development
    • European club competition has the greatest potential for growth
  • There is a need for a long-term schedule to (a) make sense of the various hockey events and (b) avoid conflict with important events in other sports (i.e., World Cup)
  • Long-term commitment from all stakeholders to ensure stability in all ways (membership, marketing, etc.)
  • Clubs must decide on their common goals and the IIHF will oversee governance of their ambitions
  • There can be only ONE unifying group that oversees international club competition

INTERNATIONAL BREAKS
  • National leagues and federations must cooperate to produce a meaningful and balanced program for both national leagues and national teams
  • Games must serve the best interests of all stakeholders – players, national federations, national leagues, fans, and media – but also take into account the players’ well-being
  • Need to determine the players’ limits (i.e. number of total games played per season)

GOVERNANCE STRUCTURE
  • Centralized governance is essential
  • Led by the IIHF, this group will consist of representatives from all stakeholders – clubs, leagues, and federations
  • The members of this group will be named by the various entities, not the IIHF
  • The representatives must have the mandate to implement change
  • It must be ensured that every voice is heard, so the successes and failures are shared and that all opinions are shared together
  • This group should then work directly with the IIHF to implement change
  • Once ideas are formalized, this group could then become a permanent entity
  • This governance decides on the balance between club concerns and national team concerns
  • Action is needed sooner rather than later – the worldwide sports calendar is filling up quickly

HOCKEY FORUM OBSERVER & RECOMMENDATIONS GROUP
Barcelona, June 12-14, 2012


1. Petr Briza, Chairman HC Sparta Prague/European Trophy Board
2. Hannes Ederer, IIHF Event Director
3. Christian Hofstetter, IIHF Marketing Director
4. Rob van Rijswijk, IIHF Club Competitions Director
5. Andrew Podnieks, IIHF.com Staff & Committee Secretary


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