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2014 NHL Draft Prospects Profiles: Kevin Fiala

Friday, 06.27.2014 / 8:30 PM / Features
By Matthew Bontorin
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2014 NHL Draft Prospects Profiles: Kevin Fiala
With the 11th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft the Nashville Predators selected Swiss- born forward Kevin Fiala. Fiala was the fastest rising prospect entering the draft. After starting the year with a second-round projection, Fiala soared up rankings and ended the year ranked in the top three for European skaters by nearly all scouting services.

Kevin Fiala



Birthplace: St. Gallen, Switzerland

Date of Birth/Age: July 22, 1996 (17)

Current Team: HV 71, (Swedish Hockey League)

Position: Center

Height: 5-10

Weight: 178 pounds

With the 11th overall pick in the 2014 NHL Entry Draft the Nashville Predators selected Swiss- born forward Kevin Fiala.

Fiala was the fastest rising prospects entering the draft. After starting the year with a second-round projection, Fiala soared up rankings and ended the year ranked in the top three for European skaters by nearly all scouting services.

Standing 5-10 and 178 pounds, Fiala is one of the smaller players in this year’s class, but that hasn’t stopped the 17-year-old from putting up big numbers in Sweden’s top professional leagues.  

The gritty center, who models his game after Sidney Crosby, says he isn’t afraid to play against anyone, and his numbers back it up. Fiala has produced nearly a point per game with HV-71’s junior team, as well as HV-71’s Swedish elite league team.

Aside from his stellar professional league campaign, Fiala represented his homeland at the World Junior Championship in Sweden, the Under-18 World Championship in Finland and the World Championship in Belarus in 2014. He became just the third player ever to participate in all three tournaments in the same year (Andrei Kostitsyn and Vadim Karagan, Belarus in 2003). Fiala led the Swiss in points at both the under-18 tournament (4g-5a-9pts, 5gp), being named one of the nation’s three best players in the process, and World Juniors (1g-4a-5pts, 5gp) as the team’s youngest member. At 17, he was the youngest member of Switzerland’s entry at the World Championship by three years, posting three assists and a team-best +3 rating playing alongside Predators defenseman Roman Josi and forward Simon Moser.

Fiala’s skills in the offensive zone are elite. He is a smooth skater that doesn’t get slowed down by checks. His stick-handling and passing skills are exceptional, and can find the back of the net from any angle with his quick and accurate wrist shot. Fiala is also known to play with a chip on his shoulder. His size doesn’t deter him from crashing the net and getting under his opponents skin.

Fiala is the fourth Swiss player to be drafted by the Predators in franchise history. (Roman Josi, Martin Hohner, Timo Helbling). This will also be the third time in the last four years that the Predators have used their top pick on a European-born player.

 

Scout’s Comments:
"He impressed me with his explosive skating, great puck-handling skills and overall quickness and speed. He has great offensive instincts and is full of surprises in the offensive zone. He just needs a bit more muscle and strength and some work in his defensive zone." Goran Stubb, Director of European Scouting

 


Statistics


 Season

Team

League

GP

G

A

TP

PIM

    

Playoffs

GP

G

A

TP

PIM 

 2007-2008

Uzwil U15

Mini A

16

27

16

43

34

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wil U15

Mini B

4

14

5

19

6

|

 

 

 

 

 

 2008-2009

Rheintal U15

Top Mini

25

15

16

31

40

|

 

 

 

 

 

 2009-2010

Uzwil U15

Top Mini

27

63

50

113

58

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Uzwil U17

Top Novizen

19

19

15

34

10

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Wil U15

Mini A

2

4

6

10

8

|

 

 

 

 

 

 2010-2011

ZSC U15

Top Mini

23

44

38

82

46

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

ZSC U17

Elite Novizen

25

10

10

20

14

|

Playoffs

7

0

2

2

 2011-2012

ZSC U17

Elite Novizen

28

34

18

52

98

|

Playoffs

8

6

8

14

24 

 

ZSC U20

Elite Jr. B

7

1

4

5

8

|

Playoffs

4

3

2

5

18 

 

GCK Lions U20

Elite Jr. A

2

0

1

1

0

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U16 (all)

International-Jr

16

14

6

20

14

|

 

 

 

 

 

 2012-2013

Malmö J18

J18 Elit

1

1

0

1

0

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Malmö J18

J18 Allsvenskan

8

5

4

9

28

|

Playoffs

4

4

3

7

 

Malmö J20

SuperElit

33

9

19

28

28

|

Playoffs

3

0

0

0

 

Switzerland U17

EYOF

3

0

3

3

2

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U18

Hlinka Memorial

4

3

0

3

2

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U17 (all)

International-Jr

5

1

3

4

2

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U18 (all)

International-Jr

15

7

4

11

8

|

 

 

 

 

 

 2013-2014

HV71 J20

SuperElit

27

10

15

25

40

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

HV71

ET

1

1

0

1

0

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

HV71

SHL

17

3

8

11

10

|

Playoffs

8

1

5

6

14 

 

Switzerland U18

WJC-18

5

4

5

9

8

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U18

Hlinka Memorial

4

2

0

2

12

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U18 (all)

International-Jr

12

7

7

14

24

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U20

WJC-20

5

1

4

5

6

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland U20 (all)

International-Jr

9

5

9

14

6

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland

WC

7

0

2

2

2

|

 

 

 

 

 

 

Switzerland (all)

International

9

0

2

2

4



Where Kevin Fiala is ranked:

Bob McKenzie of TSN has him ranked as the 15th-best overall player.

NHL Central Scouting has him ranked third among European skaters.

International Scouting Services have him ranked as the 20th-best overall player.

Future Considerations has him ranked as the 13th-best overall player.

Corey Pronman of ESPN has him ranked as the sixth-best overall player.

Craig Button of TSN has him ranked as the 22nd-best overall player.



Video:

Kevin Fiala 2013/14 Swedish Hockey League Highlights:


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