The Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers Nurnberg have played in Germany’s Deutsche Eishockey Liga since the 1995-96 season. The team has yet to win a championship but reached the finals in 1998-99 and 2006-07. The Ice Tigers play home games at the Arena Nurnberger Versicherung in Nurnbert, Germany, an 8,300 seat venue that opened in 2001. The team has retired the numbers of three players over their history.
4 – Martin Mueller
Mueller played for the team in their pre-DEL days and when they were known as EHC 80 Nurnberg. Martin played for the club from 1984-85 to 1991-92 and helped the team get promoted from the tier 3 Oberliga to the tier 2 2.Bundesliga for the 1987-88 season.
Martin played pro hockey from 1980-81 to 1993-94, all in Germany. Previous to that, he played for West Germany at the 1978 IIHF World Hockey Championships, held in Montreal and Quebec City in Canada. Over six games, he scored four and assisted on two. West Germany finished seventh out of eight teams in the tournament. That year, the Soviet Union won gold, Sweden won silver and Canada won bronze with Wayne Gretzky leading the tournament in scoring.
In his first year of pro, Mueller scored 56 and assisted on 36 for 92 points over 43 games with ERC Freiburg of the 2.Bundesliga. He finished seventh in the league for goals and eight for points. The team was led in scoring by Murray Heatley, father of current NHLer Dany Heatley.
Two years later in the Oberliga, Martin scored 64 and assisted on 46 for 110 points over just 33 games for SV Bayreuth. He placed third for goals, seventh for assists and third for points. His performance helped Bayreuth move up to the 2.Bundesliga for 1983-84. His offensive leadership continued with the team’s promotion. In 1983-84, he scored 77 goals and assisted on 34 for 111 points over 45 games. He finished second in the league in goals. Mueller was teammates with Jiri Crha that year. Crha was the number one goalie for the Toronto Maple Leafs in a dreadful 1980-81 NHL season.
Over his career, Mueller played 236 regular season games in the 2.Bundesliga, scoring 242 and assisting on 149 for 391 points. Over 110 games in the Oberliga, Martin scored 195 and assisted on 151 for 346 points.
7 – Paul Geddes
A native of Prince George, British Columbia, Geddes played in Germany from 1989-90 to 1997-98 in the 2.Bundesliga and DEL. Paul played for EHC 80 Nurnberg in the 2.Bundesliga for 1992-93 and 1993-94. He jumped to the DEL with the team for 1994-95 and played for the renamed Ice Tigers for two more seasons, 1995-96 and 1996-97.
Geddes played CIAU hockey for the University of Calgary from 1983-84 to 1986-87. In Germany, he played 206 games in the 2.Bundesliga, scoring 220 and assisting on 191 for 411 points. In the DEL, Paul played 184 regular season games, scoring 73 and assisting on 89 for 162 points.
In 1991-92 with TSV Peissenberg in the 2.Bundesliga, Geddes scored 57 and assisted on 54 for 111 points over 47 games. He finished third in goals, tied for eighth in assists and fourth in points. The following year, he moved over to Nurnberg and finished fourth in the 2.Bundesliga with 44 goals. In 1993-94, he once again finished fourth in the league, this time with 45 goals.
12 – Martin Jiranek
From Bashaw, Alberta, Jiranek played university hockey in the NCAA with Bowling Green State from 1988-89 to 1991-92. The prospect of the Washington Capitals put in three years in the American Hockey League with the Baltimore Skipjacks and Portland Pirates before moving to Europe.
After a year in Austria and a year in Italy, Martin settled in with the Ice Tigers. He played with Nurnberg from 1996-97 to 2003-04. His DEL totals include 537 regular season games, with 179 goals and 263 assists for 442 points. Over 74 playoff games, he added 23 goals and 40 points.
In 1998-99, Jiranek scored 24 and assisted on 45 for 69 points over 47 DEL games. He tied for tenth in the league for goals and placed second for assists. Two years later, he was a DEL All-Stars with the Ice Tigers in 2000-01. Currently, Martin is in his second year as Sports Manager for the Thomas Sabo Ice Tigers.