We’ve always said that our aim is to be open and transparent with you as much as we can about what is happening in the club, and things we think are important to share.  Over the last 24 hours there’s been a lot of conversation on our social media channels around Brodie Jesson’s release from the club and we wanted to talk further about that, in the context of broader actions we are taking as a club.  We’ll talk about these things as two topics – Squad Development and MKL Behaviours.

Squad Development

It’s clear to everyone that the start of the season has not given us the results we would hope for.  To aim to improve this, we look at the actions we can take and the things we can improve, and this means looking at the following areas:

  • Training and match preparation
  • Tactics and organisation
  • Fitness and health
  • Team spirit, unity and motivation
  • Team composition

We are working with Cliff and the players through a set of actions across each of these areas to enable improvement in our results.  The most visible one to you the fans is the team composition in the form of signings and departures.  As you have seen, we have signed Liam Stewart, and we have released Brodie Jesson.

Let us be clear.  Brodie was released for hockey reasons only.  There was no misconduct, and he was not fired or dismissed.  It was in no way related to anything off-ice.  We made a decision around team composition and gave Brodie notice per the terms of his contract.  Cliff phoned him to speak directly to him and explain the reasoning.

As we move forward, we will continue to look at the team composition and all the other areas above to aim to improve our results on the ice.

MKL Behaviours

Hockey is a family sport, and somewhere all our fans should feel comfortable and happy.  This applies to game time and any contact that the club and fans have at any other time.  When we brought our squad on board we worked with them to be clear about the behaviours we expected from them.  We’re also clear about the behaviours we expect from everyone else – security, stewards, staff and fans.  There have been some times over the last few days when these behaviours have not met the level we expect:

  • Incidents of fans verbally abusing other fans.  This is unacceptable and security will deal with it so please do report this to them
  • A verbal interaction between MKL staff and a player’s father.  This should not happen, and we have spoken to the staff member involved and reminded them of what we expect
  • An exchange between MKL players and a recreational team on Sunday evening.  We have reminded that at all times MKL players are ambassadors for the club and the senior players in our MKL hockey family.  They will be apologising to the rec team and would like to offer some on-ice time to work with that team to share the fun that hockey can bring

All of these things have likely been born of the pressure of a series of results which were not what we hoped.  This doesn’t make any one of them acceptable to us.  We are working hard across all areas and as always deeply value your support.

Our commitment to transparency remains, so please do give us your feedback directly at info@mk-lightning.co.uk if there are things you want us to be doing differently.