Ice hockey playoffs begin on Friday

With the NIHL ice hockey league season ending on Sunday (31 March 2024), the NIHL national playoffs begin on Friday (5 April) and Leeds Knights will once again face Hull Seahawks in back to back games.

The two sides met in the final game of the regular league season in a narrow 4-3 defeat for Leeds and now they prepare to go head to head once again. The final league game plus the two scheduled playoff games mean three consecutive meetings between the two sides in a short time frame. Whilst Leeds finished top Hull finished fourth place in the league.

When the two sides met on 31 March both goaltenders made terrific saves in a highly entertaining game at the Hull Ice Arena, giving us a flavour of what’s to come when the sides meet on Friday.

The season began back in September with a 7-2 victory for Leeds against Bristol Pitbulls.

The regular season, which has no promotion or relegation, runs from September to March. The playoffs run through this month until Sunday 28 April.

Leeds Knights have already won back to back league title trophies and now have the opportunity to add more silverware to their trophy cabinet if they can go all the way and win the play-off trophy.

The play-off final match is on Sunday 28 April and Leeds will hope to be there, the final will take place at the Skydome Arena in Coventry.

The next league action is this coming September with fixtures yet to be announced. As we look ahead to next season expectations are elevated with high hopes of a potential third consectutive league title up for grabs.

The Leeds Knights coach Ryan Aldridge and his players are more than capable of meeting expectations as has been proven in recent years. Only seven loses this season, the fewest in the division from any team, has seen a winning mentality forged and instilled. All the players, staff and everyone connected with the club have given a collective monumental effort. It’s been a great venture and a venture the Knights fans have loved being part of. The fantastic home support has helped massively as we look to carry on the journey to the playoffs, next season and beyond.

Knights goaltender Sam Gospel and captain Keiran Brown have both recently signed new contracts, securing their services for the 2024/25 season, which is a fantastic boost for the club.

The Knights fans will once again turn up in great numbers this coming September where their title defence will begin.

Final league table positions:

1. Leeds Knights
2. MK Lightning
3. Swindon Wildcats
4. Hull Seahawks
5. Peterborough Phantoms
6. Telford Tigers
7. Raiders
8. Bees
9. Solway Sharks
10. Sheffield Steeldogs
11. Bristol Pitbulls

(Top 8 qualify for play-offs)

Play-off fixtures for Leeds:

Hull. Friday 5 April (Home match)
Hull. Sunday 7 April (Away match)

Tickets are available at the Leeds Knights website here.

 

This post was written by Michael Ullah

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