Regular season defines the playoffs bracket.
Regular championship consists of 34 rounds. All matches are played on daily basis.
Each team plays two matches with opponents from the same division and one match with other teams within the league. Leadership in the division doesn’t provide with any advantage in the tournament standings.
- Matches consist of 3 periods 20 minutes each. Each game has a winner. If a game is in a tie after regulation time, depending on the game’s status: 1) 5-minute overtime period is played followed by a shootout if the score remains tied; 2) an endless overtime is played until a golden goal is reached.
- For every victory (regardless whether it happened during regulation time, overtime or the shootout) the team gains 2 points. For the defeat in the overtime or in the shootout a team gains 1 point. For the defeat in the regular time – 0 points.
- The tournament standings’ priorities in descending order:
- Wins within regulation time
- Wins within overtime
- Overtime losses
- Points difference
- In case all the indicators mentioned above coincide for two or more teams, only head to head records are taken into consideration (a separate bracket is created and teams are compared on the mentioned indicators)
According to the results of the regular championship the first eight teams from each conference are divided into pairs, determining quarterfinal pairs of each conference: the 1st plays with the 8th, the 2nd with the 7th and etc.
The winning teams enter semifinals: the winner of the 1st pair plays with the winner of the 4th, the winner of the 2nd pair plays with the winner of 3rd. The semifinals’ winners play the conference final and the winners of the conference finals will challenge for the HOL Cup.
The playoffs consist of 4 rounds:
- Conference quarterfinals
- Conference semifinals
- Conference finals
Victory in a round
In order to pass to the next round the team has to be the first to win 3 games.
Each round within a pair teams change each other in home play.
Transfers between leagues
In order to get to the higher league the team has to make it to conference’s final. Thus, 4 teams can get transferred from lower-rank league to the next and the last 4 teams from each conference’s standings descend to the lower league.
Teams led by human-players can get transfered from the lower rank league to a higher one (if there are vacant spots) during the off season with regard to their performance in playoffs and popularity.