OHL Grad Mike Danton helped KH Sanok to a Poland League playoff championship in 2013-14. Danton returns for 2014-15 and will now have two more Ontario Hockey League alumni by his side. Sanok will have Bryan Pitton between the pipes and Justin DaCosta on the blue line.
Pitton played three years in the OHL from 2005-06 to 2007-08, all with the Brampton Battalion. Brampton selected Bryan in the sixth round of the 2004 OHL Priority Selection, 106th overall. Two years later, after just his first year in the OHL, Pitton was taken in the sixth round of the 2006 NHL Entry Draft by the Edmonton Oilers, 133rd overall.
Bryan’s first pro action came in the form of a single game with the Springfield Falcons of the American Hockey League in 2007-08, while still a junior. He has been a full-time pro netminder since 2008-09 in the AHL, ECHL, the U.K.’s EIHL and the Central Hockey League.
In 2013-14, Pitton played 43 regular season games for the Allen Americans of the CHL. He then played 17 for the club in the playoffs as the Americans captured their second consecutive Ray Miron President’s Cup.
DaCosta played four years in the Ontario Hockey League from 2002-03 to 2005-06 with the Barrie Colts, Owen Sound Attack and Mississauga IceDogs. Like Pitton, Justin did not play until the year after he was drafted. The Colts picked him in the 15th round of the 2001 OHL Priority Selection, 288th overall.
Undrafted to the National Hockey League, DaCosta saw his first pro action in 2008-09 when he appeared in ten playoff games for the Colorado Eagles of the CHL. He has just come away from three years with the University of New Brunswick.
Justin has been a well-travelled full time pro defenseman since 2009-10, appearing in the ECHL, IHL, CHL, AHL, France’s Ligue Magnus, Austria’s EBEL, Finland’s Mestis and the EIHL. In 2013-14, DaCosta played exclusively with the Fife Flyers in the EIHL. He served as the team’s captain.
Danton’s career has been well-documented. Unfortunately, the most well-documented part is the six years between 2004-05 and 2008-09 when he did not play. Since his return to pro hockey, Mike has travelled much of Europe, appearing in Sweden’s Division 1, Austria’s EBEL, the Slovakia Extraliga, Kazakhstan, the Hungary based MOL Liga and the Poland Hockey League.
Mike played three years in the OHL from 1997-98 to 1999-00 with the Sarnia Sting, Toronto Majors and Barrie Colts. He was a fifth round pick by the Sting at the 1997 OHL Priority Selection, 85th overall. In 2000, the New Jersey Devils made him a fifth round pick, 135th overall.
In 2013-14, Danton started his season with Beibarys Atyrau in Kazakhstan. He then moved over to HSC Csikszereda in the MOL Liga before finishing up with KH Sanok in Poland. Mike appeared in eleven regular season games and 14 more in the playoffs.
Klub Hokejowy Sanok plays home games at the Arena Sanok in Sanok, Poland. The venue opened in 2006 and seats 3,100. The club was playoff champs in 2011-12 and 2013-14. The Poland Hockey League consists of ten teams that each play a 48 game regular season schedule.
Sanok is located in the southeast corner of Poland, near the borders with Slovakia and the Ukraine. The historic city has a population of around 40,000.