More stories in English

Why Hejda wasn´t in Sochi?

Why Hejda wasn´t in Sochi?Many fans are curios why one of the best Avalanche defensemen didn´t take a part at the Olympics in Sochi.

Jan Hejda has had the breakout season of his career in Denver. He is a top player in his role as a defensive defenseman. The naming of the new coaching staff and management has had a tremendous impact on the Czech player. Hejda´s name was a part of the very first version of the Czech national team roster for the Olympics in Sochi, Russia. Later, he didn´t make it. The Czech coach believed other players outside the NHL would play better than Jan. Why? Because this coach, Alois Hadamczik, is one of the worst coaches in Czech hockey history. There have always been rumors why Hadamczik was even named to the position as the national team's head coach. He has never appeared in a professional hockey game in his hockey career. Rumors were saying he helped a lot financially with the Czech hockey organization. It seemed he had just "bought“ his position for money, for the sponsorship. But lets let rumors be rumors and move on to the facts.

When the Eurolanche Fan Club met Jan Hejda in Prague this past summer as a part of the summer meetings, he was straight to us - "There is no chance I will be in Sochi. No chance," he said. He then continued with his explanation. The main problem was always Hadamczik´s system. There was no system. Never. Not even at the World Championship last year where Hejda played. The Czech team experienced one of its worst international tournaments then. Hejda was a part of the highly criticized group. He told us it wasn't just a coincidence that a team with many good NHL players couldn't win a medal. At the end of the tournament, there was no meeting, no recap, nothing. The communication between the coach and the team didn't exist. That was the moment when Hejda knew he wouldn't travel to Sochi.

Hejda told us about this all off the record so that's the reason why we didn't publish it anywhere until now. Why now? Because Hejda spoke with the Czech media and openly confirmed everything that we heard already. In the interviews, he repeated that Hadamczik doesn´t know how to talk with players, he has no playing system and he keeps making the same mistakes. He is very bad coach with no skills. But if you continue to read the next lines, you will get to know that he is a bad person too.

Hadamczik decided not to take Hejda or Hudler to the Olympics. Both players were having great seasons before the final announcement of the rosters. For the coach it didn't matter. He has always liked players who always agree with him in everything and who do the stupidity that he requests in spite of it not working. Hejda is a great guy. Under Sacco's regime, he knew his system didn't work too. He wanted to change it, but couldn't. He had to respect Sacco like other players and fellow defensemen who openly talked about this off the record. Back on the Czech team, he was chosen by a crazy coach like a dark ship along with Hudler. Why? Because they aren't the kind of players that openly agree with everything the coach says. But at least Hejda doesn´t have a big mouth. He has a respect for his coach, but doesn´t need to follow his steps and be talktive on every occasion.

You can compare Sacco's Colorado Avalanche and Hadamczik's Czech national team from Sochi or the past World Championships. Both teams were talented and fans expected a little more than loss after loss. It doesn't matter how talented a team is. If you have a non-talented coach behind you, you aren't going to do anything big. The quality of the coach is a key factor in every sports team's success. Just look at what Roy and co. has done with the Avalanche. Hadamczik showed the highest rank of non-professionalism. He has no competition in the world of hockey. Instead of a hand shake with Hejda or Hudler, he preferred to call up own brother-in-law Michal Barinka to the Olympics roster. Sorry to Barinka, but in comparison with both Hejda and Hudler, he's a nobody.

It is a shame that one stupid man destroyed Hejda's plans. He deserved the nomination like never before. Now, Hadamczik announced his resignation. Of course he has never admitted that the Czech´s failure was ALSO his mistake. He blamed the Czech media (!) for that. Reactions? Jaromir Jagr denied that they had problems with media in the locker room. Ondrej Pavelec revealed how players had to play their own system in the game, because Hadamczik didn´t want to talk to them about it. Vladimir Ruzicka was named to his position. He is a great guy, well respected and a good friend of Hejda. We can expect Hejda's comeback at the international level soon. Hopefully, it will be for the next Olympics or World Cup, because the Czech defenseman will be busy with the NHL playoffs for the next few years during the time when the World Championship is underway as well.

What to add at the end? Hejda loves his home country. He wanted to play in Sochi, but he knew in the summer he wasn't going anywhere. He accepted it and probably watched a Czech Olympic tragedy from his home in Denver. The Olympics has ended Hadamczik´s coaching career forever. Hopefully. We will never hear about him again. But he will hear about Hejda, I bet. It will be tough for a crazy coach to read all those articles about Hejda's day with the Cup back in the Czech Republic. 

This story includes the author´s opinion, not Eurolanche´s. 

David Puchovsky, Slovakia,
26/02/2014 - 21:30


NHL on Nov 11, 2017: "Eurolanche is the world's largest Colorado Avalanche fan club."