The top two teams will play the 2008-09 season in the Elite Series. the other four are left to duke it out in tier II, Allsvenska. As stated in my previous post, the difference between the two leagues is not just the quality of hockey, but also a difference of SEK17.5Million ($2.9Million) in royalites. It will be quite a knock to the balance sheet to finish 3rd place tonight.
There are a dozen or more possible outcomes tonight so I won’t even speculate who will win promotion.
Since there is so little dividing the teams, I hereby offer my superficial storylines to why one should cheer for each team.
Brynäs IF: They have a long and storied tradition, a nice rink (in Gävle 180km North of Stockholm) and they are currently being coached by Leif Boork – whom they fired in November only to rehire a month ago. No Canadians are currently playing for Brynäs though they do have an 18-year old, 3rd string goalie named Jakob Markström acting more like a seasoned vet than a rookie.
Mora IK: Features Canadians Eric Beaudoin and Rob Hisey. With Leksand now eliminated, this team is the hope of Dalarna: the landscape of the giant horse.
Malmö IF: Features Canadians Cole Jarrett and Frank Banham. Malmö has been linked to Oiler farmboy Rob Schremp.
Rögle: Features 2006 Olympic gold medalist and former NHLer Kenny Jönsson as the cement that holds together their defence (and offence too). And hey, their logo looks like the Oilers logo.
Although this video seems to be a rip-off/ode to the Bob Dylan classic Subterranean Homesick Blues, I think INXS & Michael Hutchence were on to something with his whole “ate” rhyming sequence.
INXS likely didn’t have ice hockey, nor sport in mind when the composed this since they missed “Relegate” - though detonate is close. Their hockey fate… relegate or reinstate?