Is the Czech Extraliga going through a crisis? (Part 1)

Is the Czech Extraliga going through a crisis? (Part 1)

02 Mar 2012 | Petr Polák
 

As we informed you before, the Czech Extraliga clubs' general managers want to close the league, which would eliminate the possibility of promotion and relegation. In the light of the latest events, the original idea of how to protect the economic stability of the clubs is starting to seem more like slapstick.

 
 
 
 
On January 10, we told you about the desire of Czech Extraliga clubs to close the league, which would effectively end the process of promotion and relegation. Everybody was against this proposal and since then, the magnitude of this issue has grown so that the club managers are now fighting on multiple fronts. If Eurohockey.com were a print-magazine, we could practically dedicate an entire issue to the situation in the Czech Extraliga. And because of the enormous scope of the situation, we have decided to publish it as a series.

The Czech Extraliga general managers are fighting on multiple levels, and each level of the fight will be explored in one article on Eurohockey.com. To begin with, the first part is devoted to the situation's background to help you easier understand the situation.

Levels of the dispute:

1. Background (read below)
2. APK vs. ČSLH (will be published on Mar 3)
3. APK vs. other clubs (will be published on Mar 4)
4. APK vs. BPA (will be published on Mar 5)
5. APK vs. the law (will be published on Mar 6)
6. APK vs. APK + Epilogue (will be published on Mar 7)

Background:

The Czech Extraliga is administered by the Association of Professional Ice Hockey Clubs (APK). The board of the APK consists of the 14 general managers of the Czech Extraliga clubs. The APK is partly independent of the Czech Ice Hockey Association (ČSLH), but remains subservient. This means that the APK oversees the day-to-day operation of the Extraliga, but critical decisions, such as closing the league from promotion and relegation, can only be made with the approval of the ČSLH.

Why does the APK want to close the league? 

"The reasons are mainly economical," said Ladislav Blažek, president of the APK and sales director of Slavia Prague. 

"We want to break young players into the rosters. Closing of the league will make it easier," added Václav Bartoš, the executive director of Rytíři Kladno.

In December 2011, in attempt to gain leverage in negotations with the ČSLH, the APK decided to withdraw from the current contract with the sport's national governing body regarding the APK's mandate for administering over the Extraliga. Because of this withdrawal, the current contract will expire in May, after the end of this season's playoffs. The managers hope the new contract will give more advantages to themselves. But if the APK doesn't come to an agreement with the ČSLH, the federation will take back control of the Extraliga, which is not a result that the teams want.

That is the background to the problem, but it has complicated matters on so many levels. Find out more in the upcoming parts of our series:

2. APK vs. ČSLH (will be published on Mar 3)
3. APK vs. other clubs (will be published on Mar 4)
4. APK vs. BPA (will be published on Mar 5)
5. APK vs. the law (will be published on Mar 6)
6. APK vs. APK + Epilogue (will be published on Mar 7) 

In the article are quotations that were originally published at iDnes.cz and Aktualne.cz.

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