Ice Hockey in Australia – ⛸️ Ice Hockey History, Teams & Betting AU

Betting on Australian Ice Hockey

With the ever-growing Australian ice hockey scene, it comes to no surprise that the interest in online sports betting has increased as well. Even though the sport is not amongst the most popular in Australia, it still has a recognisable number of fans and betting enthusiasts. Looking at the ongoing trends, online sport-betting on Australian hockey is very likely to continue to grow. Anyhow, in the table below, we have selected the best betting casinos in Australia, that are not to be missed.

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4.80 ★ out of 5

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4.70 ★ out of 5

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4.70 ★ out of 5

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4.70 ★ out of 5

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4.50 ★ out of 5

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History of Australian Ice Hockey

Before we carry on talking about betting on Australian ice hockey, let us first familiarise ourselves with it! The foundation of ice hockey in Australia can be traced back to the evening of 12th October 1904 at the Adelaide Glaciarium, the first ever ice hockey match in the country. The said location first opened doors in November 1890 with the name Cyclorama. In 1904 it was remodelled and reopened by a new group called Ice Palace Skating Company.

The first game in Australia was for what was called “hockey on the ice” and it was not really the sport that we know today. It was more like an adaption of roller polo to using ice skates instead of roller skates. At the time, ice hockey was already a well-established sport in some other countries for almost thirty years.

Old Australian Team

Anyhow, the first recorded organised game of actual ice hockey in Australia happened on 17th July 1906 and was between an Australian team and an American team of sailors from the visiting American Warship the USS Baltimore. The game itself was held in Melbourne Glaciarium and spectators reported that they could not help but notice the skill level difference of the two teams. However, despite the Australian team was not performing as good as the American, the game was hard fought and resulted in a 1-1 tie.

Following in 1909 the Australian state teams from Victoria and New South Wales were first to compete for the Goodall Cup. The Cup has since then served as the winners’ trophy of the annual national competition. Ultimately, the Goodall Cup is the oldest still awarded ice hockey trophy outside of Canada to this day.

Is the Canadian Ice Hockey Different than the Australian?

As we found out in the previous chapter, the Australian interpretation of ice hockey a century ago was quite different from the actual game. It had some resemblance to what was played in Canada and the USA at the time, but the Australian version needed a couple of decades to fully adopt the ice hockey standard. Furthermore, due to many Canadian hockey veterans either coming to coach or just moving to Australia, it can be said that there really is a Canadian ice hockey in Australia.

Australian Ice Hockey League

The Australian ice hockey league was formed in year 2000. During its first season, there were just three teams that competed in it, the Sydney Bears, Adelaide Avalanche and Canberra Knights. In the following season, three additional teams entered the league, respectively Melbourne Ice, West Sydney Ice Dogs and the Newcastle North Stars. The increase of participating teams in the Australian Ice hockey league made it more purposeful and interesting. With time it began to steadily attract more public interest, despite ice hockey not being one of the top popular sports in Australia.

Following in 2005, the Central Coast Rhinos and the Brisbane Bluetongues joined the competition as well, taking the league’s number of active teams to eight. Throughout the years some teams changed their names, for example the Adelaide Avalanche is now known as the Adelaide Adrenaline. Furthermore, the league also saw other teams coming and going but the same number of contestants was kept through the years and in 2012 the Perth Thunder came as the ninth team.

AIHL League Logo

Nowadays the Australian Ice Hockey League or AIHL is going strong and the fandom continues to grow. Of course, due to the outbreak of Covid 19, the League had to implement certain restrictions and postpone the events temporary. There are eight teams that are going to play in the upcoming 2021 championship, and you can learn more about them in the next section.

Australian Ice Hockey Teams

In the following sections we will go over the eight Australian ice hockey teams that are competing in the Australian Ice Hockey League. After we briefly mention when and where they were created, we will mention some interesting and unique details and facts about each team. Finally, we must also talk about the Australian ice hockey national team.

Adelaide Adrenaline

Adelaide Adrenaline was formed in July 2008 as a replacement of the Adeleide Avalanche. In an agreement with the AIHL, the Adrenalines took the Avalanche’s team roster and fulfilled the former team’s existing game schedule for the remainder of 2008. So far, Adrenaline’s best results were recorded in season 2009 when they won the Goodall Cup and in season 2012 when they finished second.

Adelaide Adrenaline Logo

In 2018, the Adelaide ice hockey legend, Greg Oddy, announced his retirement. During his 19 years-long career he had become a superstar of the Australian ice hockey. He was the last remaining foundation player still playing in 2018. Throughout his career, Oddy and his family helped in the Adrenaline and Avalanche teams, and the South Australian hockey, for which he will be remembered forever.

Following in 2019 Greg Oddy announced his retirement. During his 19 years-long career he has become a superstar of the Australian ice hockey. He was the last remaining foundation player still playing in 2018. Throughout the last two decades, Oddy and his family helped building the Adrenaline and Avalanche teams, and the South Australian hockey, for which he will be remembered forever.

CBR Brave

CBR Brave is another semi-professional ice hockey team that is based in Canberra. Furthermore, the team was founded in 2014 to replace the defunct Canberra Knights in the AIHL. The team’s home venue is the Phillip Ice Skating Centre also known as the Brave Cave. CBR Brave have claimed one Goodall Cup and two H. Newman Reid Trophy awards.

CBR Brave logo

On 24th February 2020, the CBR Brave head coach, Rob Starke, announced he will be retiring and not returning for the 2020 AIHL season. Even though that might cause some challenges for the Canberra’s Brave, the team is in good hands. It was later announced that Stuart Philips, the former assistant coach of the Brave, will be stepping in as the new head coach. He will be replacing Rob Starke, as he will not be returning for the 2020 AIHL season. It was later announced that Stuart Philips, the former assistant coach of the Brave, will be stepping in as the new head coach.

Melbourne Ice

The Melbourne Ice is an Australian semi-professional ice hockey team from Melbourne Victoria. The team was founded in 2000 and is based at the O’Brien Icehouse. The Melbourne Ice has been a member of the Australian Ice Hockey League since 2002 and has won four Goodall Cups and four Newman Reid trophies.

Melbourne Ice Logo

Moreover, The Ice’s main rivals are the Melbourne Mustangs. One of the reasons behind it is that the two teams share the same home venue. The Melbourne derby can be described like a regular sell out matches that are really anticipated by the fans. Often times these derby games turn out to be highly physical with many penalties to be given out.

Melbourne Mustangs

Formally called Mustangs IHC, the Melbourne Mustangs is a semi-professional Australian ice hockey team. As you might’ve guessed, the team is from Melbourne, Victoria, and was formed in 2010. Furthermore, the team has been a member of the Australian Ice Hockey League since 2011. Ultimately, the Mustangs have won one Goodall Cup and a single Newman Reid Trophy

Melbourne Mustangs Logo

As mentioned in the previous section the Melbourne Mustangs share the same home venue with the Melbourne Ice. Henceforth, each time the two teams must play with each other, there is an intriguing euphoria and quick ticket sell outs. After two disappointing seasons of 2018 and 2019, Melbourne Mustangs implemented some changes in the coaching team. After two disappointing seasons of 2018 and 2019, Melbourne Mustangs had some managerial changes leading to the appointment of the Canadian Michael Marshall as their new head coach for 2020.

Newcastle Northstars

Let us continue onto the next team, the Newcastle Northstars. Formally called Newcastle North Stars, the team is an Australian semi-professional ice hockey team from respectively Newcastle, New South Wales. The Northstars were founded in 1977, making it one of the oldest Australian ice hockey teams. Moreover, throughout its career, the ice hockey club has won six Goodall Cups.

Newcastle Northstars Logo

The main rivals of Newcastle Northstars are the Sydney Ice Dogs. Their competition with one another can be traced to year 2002 when both teams entered the AIHL for the first time. Another prominent rivalry is with the Adelaide Adrenaline which culminated on the finals of 2006 when the Northstars defeated the former with a 4-0 victory.

Perth Thunder

The Perth Thunder was found in 2010 in Perth, Western Australia. The semi-professional ice hockey team has been a member of the Australian Ice Hockey League since 2012. So far, the sports club has been a one-time Goodall Cup runner-up and two-time H. Newman Reid Trophy runners-up. In 2014, during their second year of existence, the Perth Thunders reached their ever-first finals. Even though they were unsuccessful there, they proved they might be a young team, but they are a force to be reckoned with.

Perth Thunder Logo

Between years 2015 and 2018, Perth Thunder enjoyed a period of consistency. They had overall good performance and were finishing third or second each season but failing to go any further. However, in 2019, the Thunders unshackled themselves from their trend to lose the finals. They defeated the Newcastle Northstars and reached the finals but were bettered by the Sydney Bears.

Sydney Bears

Formally called Macquarie Bears, the Sydney Bears is an Australian amateur ice hockey team. The Bears were established in 1982 in Sydney, New South Wales. Currently they are the only remaining founding member of the Australian Ice Hockey League that still functions. Overall, the Sydney Bears have won three Goodall Cups and three H. Newman Reid Trophies.

Sydney Bears Logo

In the last decade, there were many changing factors around the Sydney Bears. The Bears failed to reach the AIHL finals for seven consecutive seasons between 2011 and 2017. However, since 2018, the team’s situation began to improve as ex-bears began taking coaching positions. Later, the Sydney Bears managed to surprise many when they scored their third Goodall Cup in 2019.

Sydney Ice Dogs

The Sydney Ice Dogs is an Australian semi-professional ice hockey team. The team is from Sydney, New South Wales and was first formed in 2002. Furthermore, the Ice Dogs are a member of the Australian Ice Hockey League and two-time Goodall Cup champions. In 2017, the team celebrated their fifteen-year anniversary, creating a special edition logo and a retro style playing kit, all in their original team colours.

Sydney Ice Dogs Logo

In 2019 the team’s performance was decent and they challenged for finals, but unfortunately, they finished the season in sixth place. Nonetheless, Sydney Ice Dog’s forward, Tim Crowder, finished the season as the top point scorer in the league with the amazing score of 77 points. During the same season, another teammate, Dylan Quaile, was nominated for AIHL MVP and Defenceman of the Year.

Australian National Team

The men’s national ice hockey team of Australia, or also known as the Mighty Roos, has participated in just one Winder Olympics. During the 1960 games, the Australian ice hockey team lost both of their games against Czechoslovakia and the eventual gold medallist, the United States. As the 2020 World Championship was cancelled due to the virus outbreak, the last held games that Australia participated were in 2019, when the national team finished 31st.

Australian National Team Logo

Observing their performance from the previous years, we can conclude that they have mostly been around the 30-35th places. Furthermore, Australia’s national team was previously holding the world record for most goals and highest winning margin in a IIHF World Championship game. Their achievement was recorded against New Zealand by a score of 58-0 in 1987. Anyhow, that number was surpassed in 2008 by the women’s team of Slovakia with 82 goals against the Bulgarian women’s team.

Tips for Future Betting Opportunities

Whenever the Australian ice hockey season is on make sure to visit some of the best betting sites and take a look at the available games and matches. If it is going to be your first time on such online platforms, we would advise you to first make sure that the site is legit and has the required licenses. Otherwise you are exposing your personal details and money to danger and potential fraud.

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There are many great online casinos to begin your Australian Ice hockey betting experience. Many of these providers have attractive welcome bonuses specially tailored for the sport-betting fans, which makes such betting sites to stand out from the competitors. Ultimately, you could get great promotions on your first bet, which is simply amazing. If you would like to learn more, you can check out our article on Australian online gaming.

Can I use Sport Betting Apps for Australian Ice Hockey?

Of course, you can! Many of the online betting websites also have a native app which you can use when betting on your favourite Australian ice hockey teams. Usually, users can hardly notice any difference between using the browser version of the sport-betting site or their native application. Ultimately, as the situation with each provider is different, you will need to make sure if it has an app and if it features sport-betting.

Conclusion

To conclude, Australian ice hockey might not have long traditions but has proven that the sport is here to stay. For the last two decades, we could say that the number of teams in the league has quadrupled, and it is more than likely that the winter-sport will continue to grow. With the development of the Australian ice hockey scene, more native and foreign fans of the sport began to flock to support their favourite Aussie team.

Respectively, the increasing popularity resulted in even larger interest in sport-betting, hence many betting sites began including the Australian League as well. Finally, if you would like to check how is the betting situation at another big ice hockey player, we suggest you look at the best Australian ice hockey betting sites.

FAQ

Australian Ice Hockey is a broad topic with a lot of information regarding all aspects of the sport. We are sure that you might have tons of queries by the end of this review. Therefore, we have prepared a selection of the most frequently asked questions and answered them for you.

? Is ice hockey popular in Australia?

Even though ice hockey is not amongst the most popular sports in Australia like Football, Cricket, Rugby Union and others, the winter sport still enjoys decent interest from the Australians that continues to grow. You can learn about how the sport came to be in the form that we know it today in the Australian ice hockey history chapter.

? What is the Australian ice hockey league?

As mentioned previously, the Australian Ice Hockey League is the main Australian Ice Hockey championship that is held each year. In it, you could see all the big Aussie teams to participate and compete with one another for the Goodall Cup.

? Does the Australian national ice hockey team compete with other countries?

Yes, the Australian national ice hockey team does compete with other countries, excluding season 2020, as it was cancelled due to Covid. Ultimately, the team has never won the world championship and has somewhat steadily held its position around the 30th place.

? Which are the best Australian ice hockey teams?

It could be argued that all the teams that are in the Australian ice hockey league are the best ones in the country. However, if we judge according to the results from the last Australian League, we could state that for the last ice hockey season, the best team are the Sydney Bears.

?️ Can I bet on the Australian ice hockey league matches?

Betting on Australian ice hockey matches has seen a gradual increase in the last decade. Overall, with the growth of the Australian ice hockey league, many sport-betting providers and online casinos have turned their attention to the Aussie scene. You could learn more on our Australian ice hockey betting section.