THE PATH TO THE FINAL LEADS OVER “CATTINI” AND “TORRIANI”
Since 2010, the Spengler Cup is played among six teams using a new format. The game dates are set, however, the fixtures are known only for the first day of the six-day tournament. The teams are split into two groups for the preliminary round.
Group “Torriani” plays the afternoon games, while group “Cattini” contends in the evening. The opening game will take place on Boxing Day, December 26th, at 3pm.
As of December 29th the qualification for the semifinals begins. The two best-placed teams of the preliminary round receive a bye, while the other four teams compete in a pre-semifinals match-up for the last two spots in the semifinals. The second-placed team in group “Torriani” will face the third-placed team in group “Cattini”, and vice-versa. The winners of these match-ups will move on to next round, where they will face the first-placed teams of each group. The winners will then face-off on December 31st at 12pm to determine the winner of the Spengler Cup.
In the preliminary round, the winner of every game receives 3 points, the loser none. If the game is tied after 60 minutes, 5 minutes of overtime are played. If the game remains tied, the winner is determined by a shoot-out. The losing team receives one point if the loss occurs after the first 60 minutes of play (i.e. in overtime or a shoot-out).
The names of the two groups
The two groups are named “Torriani” and “Cattini” after the famous “ni-offense” of the 30's and 40's. Richard “Bibi” Torriani, Hans “Joe” Cattini, and Ferdinand “Pic” Cattini, who played together from 1933 on, revolutionized Swiss ice hockey. For a decade and a half they formed the top offensive line for HC Davos and the Swiss National Team. Journalists and statisticians soon saved themselves the trouble of listing every player by name; “ni-offense” was simply written on HC Davos' line-up. Torriani, for decades the most popular Swiss athlete, was the head of the line. It was him, too, who spoke the oath at the second Olympic Winter Games in St. Moritz in 1948. Later, the Swiss team won the bronze medal. With the “ni-offense” Davos won “its tournament” six times between 1933 and 1943. Understandably, in the Swiss championship HC Davos was barely challenged at all.