Jakub Vrana

by Pat Quinn on December 13, 2016

 

Jakub Vrana, LW/RW

Shoots: L

Height: 6-0

Weight: 187

Born: 1996-06-28

Hometown: Praha, CZE

Drafted: 2014 by Washington Capitals, 13th overall

 

 

Observations:

December 2016 – After producing 16 points in 18 AHL games Vrana was called up to the NHL club after an injury to top six forward TJ Oshie. Vrana has averaged approximately 12 minutes of ice time and has 10 shots in those five games, one of which he registered zero shots. He managed to score his first NHL goal versus the Buffalo Sabres on December 9th on a great pass from Evgeni Kuznetsov. For a majority of his NHL time he has been set up on a nice offensive line with Burakovsky and Lars Eller. He should continue to get chances on that line until as long as he produces. I still do not expect him to stay up all season but if he begins producing they will not be able to send him down. Pat Quinn

November 2016 – Vrana is again producing well in the AHL with 10 points in 13 games and is first on the Bears in goals. His shots per game are down though which is a little concerning and with seven goals he is riding a high shooting percentage of 25%. Vrana randomly has 14 penalty minutes on the year, but that is due to one game where he had 12 minutes after a team wide altercation to end a six to three loss. The Hershey Bears are slightly more spread out this year and preach more defense than offense. It would be better if Vrana got going and scored over a point per game but there is nothing to be worried about for the future. Pat Quinn 

Oct 2016 - Vrana was recently sent down to the Hershey Bears as Capitals management decided it would be in his best interest to get more seasoning with 18+ minutes in the AHL. Coach Trotz said of Vrana "I think the one thing that we’re pretty confident of is that he will be an NHL regular, we’re a deep team. He’s a 20-year-old player. He’s worked on his defensive game, and it’s gotten much better. The wall play has gotten much better. Now, what we’d like to see from him is more of a pro game. In the American Hockey League, he can hang on to the puck a little bit more. I need him to give-and-go a little bit more. It’ll actually make him quicker, and he’s a quick player as it is. Right now, [he’s] just relying on carrying the mail a little bit much to have production at this level. But he’s 20 years old and he’s a pretty good talent. And he’s a fantastic kid. Got a great work ethic. We expect him to be a longtime Capital, for sure." You can still expect him to get called up this year when injuries happen. Pat Quinn

Oct 2016 - Vrana is looking to make the Capitals roster which is loaded at the moment with possibly onbe top nine spot open. His play during the prospect tournament was not the best it could have been as there was a sense he really shouldhave taken it over, but instead was just good. Hershey Bears head coach Troy Mann has been tougher on Vrana than other prospects in the system as the Capitals really want him to round out his game and be a constant top six threat. He is improving in the defensive end thakfully. Watching exhibition play Vrana is still getting knocked off the puck along the boards easily and tries to do too much himself to get the team going, which is never a bad thing in itself but can routinely turn the puck over in the NHL. The odds are high he will be back in the AHL this season but only because Washington's roster is full and he would be better served getting 18+ minutes a night in the AHL. I am still convinved the look for him to get games in the NHL but not stick full time until next season. Pat Quinn

July 2016 - Vrana did not attend the Capitals development camp this past week as Washington management decided it would be best for him to stay training in the Czech Republic after a long post season, where Vrana finished with 14 points in 21 games and at during the final two rounds was often the most dangerous Hershey player on the ice. The goal of both Trotz and GM MacLellan is to get Vrana some NHL playing time for the upcoming season but admit minutes will be hard to come by as they plan to rotate in a few young players on the open third line spot. Bears head coach Troy Mann admits Vrana is not ready for a full time NHL role as he needs more strength, something Vrana admitted to once the playoffs were over, and smarter defensive play. Look for him to get a full time role for the 2017-18 season, but he will have to earn it. Pat Quinn

March 2016 - 18 games back from injury and Vrana has 57 shots and 18 points in that span. His longest span without a point is four games, albiet a very small sample size. With so much time missed this season expect him to start, and lead, Hershey next season and see a few Capitals games if he plays well. However, depending on Washington's contracts and cap management, it could force Vrana into a bottom six role, which would not suit the type of player he is. Pat Quinn

February 2016 - In six games since returning from injury, Vrana is now up to game speed and back to being his dangerous self. He now has six points in that span with an impressive 21 shots on goal. It appears as though his wrist is working fine. Pat Quinn

February 2016 - Vrana returned much earlier than expected as he played in the final three January games for Hershey recording no points but firing off 10 shots. He is obviously not up to game speed yet, but that will come with time and no set backs.Expect him to again become one of Hershey's top threats as the season winds down. Pat Quinn

Nov 2015 – Vrana started the season for the Hershey Bears very well registering six points in six games. He is currently tied for third on the team in scoring despite only playing six of the last ten games due to injury. The wrist injury happened in an October game and the severity was not known until recently. Bad news is he will be out three to four months from hockey related activites, good news is that the surgery was a success. He should be back around the beginning of March. Pat Quinn

Sept 2015 – Vrana has been sent to the AHL to attend the Hershey Bears camp. He was not expected to initially make the Caps, so this is not a discouraging sign as there is not much room for him on the NHl roster. Playing most of the season in the AHL should also help his development. Pat Quinn

Sept 2015 – Vrana impressed at the prospects tournament with his speed, vision, and hands down low. He will likely spend a majority of the year in the AHL, but with a strong training camp Capitals management has said he could earn a spot. Likely he will be a call ups when injuries hit and the Caps are in need of more scoring or on a show-us-what-you-can-do role for a few games. Either way Vrana is one of the more exciting offensive prospects to own in fantasy and should be a fixture past the 2016 season. Pat Quinn

May 2015 – Vrana posted a respectable 24 points in 44 games for Linköping of the SHL. He posted five points, four of them goals, in 11 games as they were eliminated in the SHL playoffs. Vrana then came to the Bears for their final three games of the season, where he posted five assists. He played all 10 games for the Bears scoring six points in those games. Once in the AHL Vrana did not shoot as much as he normally does, but that was likely due to him wanting to show that he can do more than shoot. He is often criticized for not using his teammates, but his time in the SHL playoffs and AHL showed that he is attempting to utilize the players around him more. Pat Quinn

anuary 2014 – Vrana had a subpar World Junior tournament for the Czech Republic. He had two goals (both scored in a 5-2 loss to Sweden) and one assist in five games. Throughout the tournament Vrana would try to do everything by himself, rarely utilizing the other players on the ice and opposing defenders would take notice swarming him and stopping him from developing plays. He did lead the Czechs in shots with 23 showing that he loves to shoot the puck and create offense.Pat Quinn

November 2014 – Vrana has 11 points, five goals and six assists, in 17 SHL games so far this year. Last year in 24 games he had three points. He is not seeing top minutes and power play time, but he is sixth in team scoring behind team (and league) leader Jeff Taffe. He played in the Czech Republic U20 tournament for a second year in a row, this time putting up six points in six games. He will be one to watch in the World Junior tournament. Pat Quinn

June 2014 – The Washington Capitals selected Jakub Vrana 13th overall in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft. Brendan Ross

February 2014 – Once ranked fairly high, Vrana has experienced some bouts of inconsistency in his game and has yet to really develop the defensive awareness that scouts were hoping for. That aside, Vrana is an imaginative passer with above-average puck skills and his knack for cashing in on loose pucks in the scoring area doesn’t go unnoticed. His arsenal features a quick accurate release that can fool opposing goaltenders and his ability to find the scoring areas cannot be taught. Brendan Ross

 

Fantasy Outlook: B+

Raw prospect with good offensive instincts especially as a playmaker. Projects as a top-six forward.

 

Footage:

Jakub Vrana scores versus Canada at the 2014 U20 WJC:

 

Vrana IIHF U18 highlights:

 

Buy the latest Fantasy Prospects Report here.