BUDAPEST – At a meeting in the Hungarian capital of Budapest with the participating clubs, the structure of the 2013/2014 IIHF Continental Cup and the organizers of the six tournaments have been selected.
for all groups, dates, participants and host.
French champion Rouen Dragons was chosen to host the final tournament from 10 to 12 January 2014.
It will be the third time after 2009 and 2012 that the club from the Normandy region will host the Continental Cup Super Final in its small, but atmospheric Île Lacroix Arena at the River Seine.
In 2012 the Dragons sensationally won the event on home ice that also included Donbass Donetsk, Yunost Minsk and HC Asiago. It was the first major title won by a French team.
Rouen won the 13th French title – the fourth in a row – in April and will be joined in its dragons’ den by Donbass Donetsk, which is pre-qualified as the reigning Continental Cup champion.
The Ukrainian champion, who also plays in the Russian-based Kontinental Hockey League, took revenge last January and defeated the Rouen Dragons 7-1 on home ice in Donetsk to win this year’s Continental Cup.
The other two participants of the four-team final tournament will be determined through the Preliminary Round. In total, 19 teams from as many European countries are registered for the competition that includes six tournaments over four stages.
The first round will be staged in Belgrade 27-29 September with the winner advancing to the second round with tournaments in Nottingham and Dunaujvaros played from 18 to 20 October.
Two third-round tournaments from 22 to 24 November will determine the two additional finalists. Italian champion Asiago Hockey will host Group D that also includes Toros Neftekamsk, the champion of the Russian second-tier league VHL, and Yertis Pavlodar, the winner of the Kazakh league.
SønderjyskE Vojens will organize Group E in Denmark that also includes Norwegian champion Stavanger Oilers and Neman Grodno, which won the Belarusian league for the first time in 12 years in April.
MARTIN MERKRepresentatives of the IIHF and the clubs met in Budapest this weekend to prepare for the 2013/2014 IIHF Continental Cup. Photo: Hannes Ederer