|Photo from Rostislav Čada's last game in charge of Slovan|
However, Jaroslav Janus and the rest of Slovan’s capitulation to Dinamo Moscow in the 2012/13 playoffs set the tone of things to come, and last season was one of frustration at the Slovnaft Arena. The sole Slovak team in the KHL toiled but could only finish 11th in the Western Conference, meaning it was the Nadezhda Cup rather than the Gagarin Cup they were playing for.
Despite this, Rostislav Čada’s time in Bratislava will be well remembered, as he managed to make what should’ve been a struggler, into a competitor. Slovan have consistently punched above their weight against the giants of Russian hockey, and Čada’s style of play has been an integral part of the club picking up historic victories over the likes of SKA St. Petersburg, Ak Bars Kazan and Metallurg Magnitogorsk. Over the past two seasons, Čada’s brand of counter-attacking hockey, relying on the speed of players like captain Milan Bartovič and Libor Hudáček has proven successful, especially when paired with the incredible performances of Jaroslav Janus, especially in 2012/13.
The announcement on Slovan Bratislava’s webpage is as follows:
“HC Slovan Bratislava thanks Rostislav Čada for the honesty and responsibility he showed during his 29-month tenure in Bratislava for our cub. We wish him every success in his future work and private life."
Without wishing to enter the realm of counter-factual reporting, Slovan’s recent turn in results may have convinced Čada that he had achieved all that he could have with his limited resources. After three wins out of three to start the current campaign, Slovan’s luck has turned, and most recently a toothless 3-0 loss on home ice to strugglers Severstal Cherepovets may have been the straw that broke the camel’s back.
|Slovan's fans have supported the team in their droves, yet|
budgets remain tight at the Slovnaft Arena
|Vladimir Országh becomes Slovan's interim coach|
along with Ján Lipianský
It doesn’t get much tougher for Országh, Lipianský and Slovan as they look to break their three game losing streak against Alexander Radulov and his CSKA Moscow side at the Slovnaft Arena on Saturday. CSKA have won five games out of six so far this season, whilst a Slovan loss may see the team fall out of the playoff positions already.
I, for one, will miss Čada. I think he did a fantastic job with what he had before him, and has made Slovan into a competent and competitive KHL team. I’m going to miss seeing him on the bench at the Slovnaft Arena, where peculiarly he stood in front of his players, right at ice level. Who knows what is next for the Brno native, but Velvet Hockey wishes him all the best.