Goodnight and Good Luck – Petr Polodna and Jakub BartonPosted: 30/09/2016
So with the new additions to the Herd having been looked at, it’s time to turn our attention to those who are leaving with the departure of Petr Polodna and Jakub Barton.
What have we lost?
In Barton the Bison have lost a defenceman who, sadly just didn’t fit. He had a little bit of size and was positionally sound for the most part. Whilst it’s really easy to bemoan his performances (and the fact he was benched for large chunks of last weekend) he’s clearly not a bad hockey player, just not the one for right here, right now.
In Polodna, the Bison lose a decently skilled forward. Polodna has good hands, sees the ice well and formed a decent link with Ciaran Long and Vanya Antonov. Polodna isn’t the speediest of players but he’s not exactly a slouch with it. He was on a line with people who could move the puck well and he could move the puck pretty well himself.
Who replaces them?
Barton is replaced at the back by Jan Jarabek with Polodna being replaced in the forward ranks by Derek Roehl.
Where have they gone?
At the moment, neither player is listed as having picked up a team.
These are two very different stories of guys leaving;
Jakub Barton is not a bad hockey player. Irrespective of what you think you know about hockey in Slovakia, it’s not an easy place to play and to get promotion from 1.Liga to the Extraliga is no mean feat. The problem for Jakub Barton was that he was the wrong player in the wrong place at the wrong time.
Forced into a corner by the sudden resignation of Miroslav Vantroba, Sheppard went and tried to find someone who could step in at a moment’s notice. Unfortunately for Barton and whilst he’s clearly not a bad player, he didn’t adapt to the Bison’s game, the EPL style and crucially he didn’t play very well either. He was alright but he was no better than some of the lower end British players on the team when the Bison needed him to be more. We needed him to score, he didn’t. We needed him to not get beaten easily and get into the wrong position but he occasionally managed that too. When he was benched for large swaths of last weekend, the announcement on Monday was not a massive surprise.
Jan Jarabek is also a risk but as someone who has played abroad for the last few years, you can be forgiven for thinking that he might be better at adapting to different styles of playing after time in Denmark, Sweden, Germany and Kazakhstan.
Petr Polodna on the other hand is a little less fortunate. People will point to the fact he had only 3 assists in 6 games and say that it’s not enough but to lay all the blame for the Bison’s poor start and offensive struggles at the feet of one player. The issues for Polodna were two fold; more was clearly expected from him in short order and a very good option came along.
Long had goals, Antonov had goals but Polodna has 3 assists and arguably wasn’t firing when the others on his line were. Yes, he found the net in the shootout against Peterborough but that wasn’t enough it seems.
The other one is down to perception so I leave this one to you, the reader to decide upon. Go to Elite Prospects and have the profiles of Petr Polodna and Derek Roehl side by side. Knowing what we know, who do you choose? Doug Sheppard has clearly made his choice based on the evidence before his eyes.
Thank you, Jakub. Thank you, Petr. Thank you for trying, it simply wasn’t to be.