With the news of Panthers forward Jack Skille signing with Rosenborg IHK Elite, here's a quick look at the team and league, as Norway’s GET-ligaen isn’t one of the more well-known European loops.
GET-ligaen is the top league in Norway and consists of ten teams: Frisk Asker, Lillehammer IK, Lorenskog IK, Tonsberg IH, Sparta Sarpsborg, Stavanger Oilers, Stjeren Hockey, Storhamar Dragons, Vålerenga Ishockey and Rosenborg IHK Elite. The ten teams play a 45 game regular season with the top eight qualifying for the playoffs. The playoffs consist of three best of seven series to decide the league championship. Last season’s winner was Sparta Sarpsborg who claimed their third title by defeating the Stavanger Oilers four games to one in the finals. The two teams at the bottom of the regular season standings play in a six game round robin tournament with the top two teams from the First Division (the second tier league in Norway). The two best finishers in the round robin tournament either keep or earn a spot in GET-ligaen the following season.
Rosenborg IHK Elite is based in the city of Trondheim and play their home games at the 3,000 seat Leangen Ishall. This is their third season in GET-ligaen after earning promotion from the First Division in March 2010. They finished at the top of the First Division that season and earned their spot in the elite league by placing second in the qualification tournament. The team finished in 8th place the previous two GET-liagen seasons and was swept in the first round of the playoffs both times, first by Sparta Sarpsborg and last season by the Stavanger Oilers. So far this season the team, coached by Barry Martinelli, has played eight games, winning twice, losing five times in regulation and picking up a another loss in overtime. Their most recent tilt was a 6-2 road win over Storhamar on October 11th, with forward Ian McDonald scoring three goals and adding three assists. They are currently in ninth place in the GET-ligaen standings. McDonald leads the team in scoring with 10 goals and 7 assists while Simon Nordh is the club’s starting netminder.
The addition of Skille can only help the team’s effort to keep its spot in the GET-lIgaen. Rosenborg plays next on Sunday but my guess is that Skille will not be in the lineup until the game after that on October 18th, against Lorenskog, at the earliest.