Another player to see his stock rise as the season went on is Czech forward Martin Kaut.
Expected to be a 2nd or 3rd puck when the season began, Kaut was able to get himself into the conversation as a first round pick and likely ends up there when we hit draft day.
A smart and well-rounded offensive player, Kaut looks good compared to his cohorts and provides some intriguing value when we look at underlying numbers. Given that information, we have Kaut landing in the 26th spot of our draft rankings but it could be easily argued that he should go a couple spots earlier.
Let’s take a look at the Czech forward.
- Age/Birthdate: 17.96/ October 2, 1999
- Birthplace: Brno, Czech Republic
- Frame:6-foot-1/ 174 lbs
- Position: RW
- Handedness: R
- Draft Year Team: HC Dynamo Pardubice(Czech)
- Czech U16 Most Goals (37)
- Czech U18 Playoffs Best Plus/Minus (+11)
- Hlinka Memorial Gold Medal
Kaut represented the Czech Republic at almost every tournament that he was eligible for this season. That includes a standout performance at the U20 World Juniors that saw him post seven points in seven games.
His CHL rights are currently owned by the Brandon Wheat Kings, who drafted him with the 24th overall selection in the 2017 CHL Import Draft.
|GP||G||A||P||SEAL||INV%||5v5 Pr INV%||5v5 eP160||Sh/Gp||Sh%||GF%||GF%rel||GD60rel||XLS%||XPR||xVAL|
In terms of the offensive categories, Kaut doesn’t really stand out and had an offensive outburst to close out the Extraliga season. He does, however, stand out in terms of the draft analytic tools like SEAL and pGPS.
Adjusted Scoring (SEAL)
The late-season outburst in offence is apparent as he was given a little more ice time to close out the year and thus saw an uptick in performance. It’s good to see that when he was given a larger role in Extraliga, he produced and combine that with his international production and the boxcar stats are more impressive.
Looking at the GF% WOWY and 5v5 eP60 and Kaut looks very good – just reinforcing that he was productive and made his teammates better.
Keeping in mind that teenage players see lesser roles in Europe, as evidenced by his ice time and historically, and Kaut looks good in all these lenses despite not jumping off the page above.
Kaut presents a 31.4% success rate among cohorts with a high expected production of 59.4 points per 82 games played.
Kaut isn’t a terribly dynamic player that makes these highlight reel plays but he just makes things happen offensively. He is confident with the puck leaning more on the safe play rather than putting his team at risk. That type of play allows him to be patient, concise and direct with his attacks. The Brno native holds onto the puck quite well but doesn’t seem to hold it too long.
The right-hander is a good playmaker, and that is how you could categorize his game, with the ability to make good passes in stride or while attacking a cycle play. Although not particularly flashy, he is good at finding those teammates in prime situations. He does have an underrated shot that he can us effectively when given space.
He has a fantastic work ethic in all three zones but doesn’t waste energy for the sake of puck pursuit. Overall, Kaut is a really good two-way player who is probably suited best for the wing but could play centre in a pinch.
As with many players coming from Europe, Kaut’s numbers don’t jump off the page but when you looking back at some of the other Czech forwards taken in the Entry Draft over the last few years, Kaut looks fine.
In 38 games last year, Martin Necas posted nine goals and seven assists while Filip Chytil posted four goals and four assists in 38 games. Both are highly spoken about prospects one year after being drafted and Kaut is right in the middle of their draft season production. He followed up his strong regular season with five points in seven playoff games. Not to mention that he relied on 5v5 production for the majority of his points, with 81% of his points coming in those even man situations.
Kaut was diagnosed with a minor hear issue at the NHL Draft combine but will have minor surgery to rectify it and it’s not expected to be an issue going forward.
The underlying data suggest that Kaut has more to give at the Extraliga level and he produced at almost every tournament against his peers. Combine that with him standing out in the draft analytical tools we have Kaut is a player who may stand out in a couple of years.
|Consolidated||Average||Future Considerations||Hockey Prospect.com||ISS Hockey||McKeen’s||The Athletic||TSN Bob McKenzie||TSN Craig Button||The Hockey News||Sportsnet||ESPN||Dobber Prospects|
He’s especially effective around the net. He is as good a finisher there as he is a passer. He’s great at reading the play develop and making the perfect pass to a cutting teammate. Watch the primary assists he had at the World Juniors.
Kaut can play in all situations. With the game on the line needing a stop, he has no issues jumping into a scrum and winning battles. This is despite being undersized at 6-foot-1 and 174 pounds. He is strong on the puck and uses that to his advantage.
He’s a late ’99 birthdate so he’s older but has produced very strong numbers in the Czech top league this season – comparable to Martin Necas and Filip Chytil a season ago. He’s quick, elusive and knows how to finish