Big Ten Lays Claim to 'The Joe,' Xcel for Tournament
CHN Staff Report
The Big Ten is seizing two popular college hockey venues for its postseason tournament, when it begins play in 2013-14.
The conference announced today that Detroit's Joe Louis Arena and St. Paul's Xcel Energy Center will rotate as hosts of the event in a four-year span between 2014 and 2017, starting with St. Paul. Those two arenas have been known as home of the CCHA and WCHA tournament, respectively, for years.
The Big Ten will be comprised of powerhouse schools from each of those conferences — Michigan, Michigan State and Ohio State from the CCHA, and Wisconsin and Minnesota from the WCHA. The league will also include Penn State, which begins play as an independent this year.
The creation of the Big Ten prompted the creation of the NCHC, which was formed by some of the more powerful schools in the WCHA and CCHA. The holdover schools from each conference will remain in a watered-down WCHA, while the CCHA will cease to exist.
The NCHC and new-look WCHA still need to find a home for their postseason tournament.
The Big Ten previously announced that the tournament will comprise all six teams in a single-elimination format, all taking place on that final weekend. It also previously decided to have a 20-game conference schedule, with each team playing the other five schools four times per season.