Date:  Source: Elite Ice Hockey League

The Elite Ice Hockey League are delighted to announce the dates for the Play-off Finals weekend 2018 and this season’s Challenge Cup Final.

A staple in the annual ice hockey calendar, the play-offs will take place over the weekend of Saturday 7th and Sunday 8th April 2018 at Nottingham’s Motorpoint Arena.

While the 2017/18 Challenge Cup Final will be contested on Sunday 4th March at Ice Arena Wales in Cardiff.

For the play-offs, Nottingham will again provide the venue for ice hockey’s showpiece event, where the last four teams will compete for the final trophy of the season.

Sheffield Steelers won the competition earlier this year in a classic final with Cardiff Devils, winning 6-5 after a second period of overtime, in a game that lasted four hours in total.

Last season’s Challenge Cup Final was hosted in Cardiff, with the Devils taking the first of three trophies in an entertaining 3-2 win over the Steelers.

EIHL Chairman Tony Smith is already looking forward to both events as he reflected on the success of last year.

“The 2017 finals were a massive success for the Elite League, with two great finals contested by two fabulous teams,” he said.

“The play-off final in particular was a wonderful advert for the sport in this country and I’m sure it’s something we’re all looking forward to again.

“I understand there had been some confusion with the dates due to possible conflicts with when the World Championships were taking place.

“We had to be sure of this and one or two other outstanding matters before we could announce anything officially and I’m delighted we’re finally in a position to do so.

“Returning the Challenge Cup Final to Cardiff was an easy decision and their hosting of it last year was a credit to Todd Kelman and his team there.

“Once again, it will be a great event and something to look forward to in the coming months.

“Overall, the early signs are good that it’s going to be a great season and I’m sure everyone will be excited to see who the finalists will be in both instances.

Further information regarding tickets will be announced in due course, but are expected to go on sale in January.

Information on the format for the play-offs will also be announced in due course.

PHOTO: Dean Woolley