– Nürnberg v Cologne, it was a clear affair at the start of the DEL period. Then the Tigers got stronger, now both are looking for their way – on and off the ice. The two traditional clubs meet on Friday.
Reinhard Hussenether already played in DEL2, when the second division in ice hockey was still called the 2nd Bundesliga. The ice sports, on the other hand, did not exist for a long time, nor did the EHC 80 Nürnberg. After the demise of SG Nürnberg, Hussenether stayed in town, started with EHC at the bottom again and scored goals for the eighties, many goals. Hussenether is now 64 years old, but he has not been forgotten – neither as a goalscorer nor as a symbolic figure.
Before the first home game of the Ice Tigers’ 29th season in the German Ice Hockey League, Hussenether could not be overlooked. With a choreography, the southern curve, which consisted mainly of people who were not even born when Hussenether’s career ended, commemorates the loyal talent and predecessors of the ice branches. Next to the character manager of the EHC 80 founder was his most famous quote: “I could have played higher, but I didn’t want to. I wanted to study and score goals for the 1980s.” Ice hockey fans in this city also said “It’s an honor for this city…”.
Lüneburger with logo
There are still students among the current Nürnberg players, but they have become professionals nonetheless. They score their goals for Nürnberg Ice Tigers Eishockey GmbH, and for away games they no longer have to go to the ice surface in socks, as Hussenether once did in Bad Kissingen, because they thought it was a good idea to have the dressing room.” a good hundred meters” away from the ice to line up. The DEL is a professional league, the state league’s artificial ice wouldn’t be in the early 80’s. And yet, especially among the Istigren, there is a longing for the good old days, even among those who have never experienced them.
Leon Hungerecker was born in Lüneburg, the goalkeeper has grown quite a bit at HSV, most recently he was a guest at the Eisbären Berlin championship. After this, his move was announced, and the 24-year-old is referred to very positively in Nuremberg. Good guy, really good guy, they say. It has not yet been seen on the ice. The goal still belongs to Niklas Treutle, one of two natives of Nuremberg in the squad. However, Hungerecker is believed to be able to replace the national goalkeeper at any time. That’s exactly what he needs to do more often than Alex Dubeau or Ilya Sharipov recently. Meanwhile, Hungerecker has already dealt with the history of Nuremberg ice hockey in more detail. For almost all ice hockey goalies, masks and their design are identity-forming and extremely important. Hungerecker had his new goalie mask sprayed with the EHC 80 logo.
Master? Why not in 2023?
Nobody ordered him to do this, but it fits into a nostalgia trend that should result in a closer connection between fans and the club. The fact that Istigrene from time to time ran out in green or completely black at the request of the ubiquitous name sponsor during the Thomas Sabo period was at best tolerated by the supporters. However, red and blue remained the colors of the basket. Since Wolfgang Gastner has been at the helm as managing director and shareholder of Kurt-Light-Weg, they have also been the colors of the Ice Tigers again. The red shoulder stripe is a visible reminiscence from the 2002/2003 season. The ice tigers have history, now it counts again.
Kölner Haie is a further eight years older than EHC 80 and thus Ice Tigers. During this time, they have become German champions eight times. The wonderful and unfortunately no longer existing magazine “No Sports” chose Cologne as ice hockey city, which means: ice hockey capital of Germany. People from Mannheim, Füssen, Tölzer and Düsseldorf did not find it so funny. But what it means to co-exist as Kölner Haie alongside “Effzee” became clear this summer as the word championship was mentioned again and again, determined to garner some attention along with the football club. Why not in 2023? Big, heavy players left and new big, heavy players came, as is always the case with Uwe Krupp. On the ice, the sharks are an alternative to the ice tigers.
In the first weekend, it was enough for an impressive win against Munich and a disappointing defeat in Augsburg. Opposites meet on Friday at 19.30 – in the Reinhard-Hussenether-Arena.