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06-22-2012, 04:55 PM
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Dallas Stars 2012 Draft Scouting Reports

With the 13th overall pick, from the Kitchener Rangers, Dallas selects Radek Faksa.

Height: 6' 2.75"
Weight: 200.4 lb
Wing Span: 77.75"
Shoots: Left
Position: Center
Birthday: January 9th, 1994
2011-12: 62GP - 29G - 38A - 67PTS - 47PIM - (+19)
Playoffs: 13GP - 2G - 4A - 6PTS - 10PIM (-3)
WJC-20: 6GP - 2G - 0A - 2PTS - 4PIM (-3)

Stars' scout Jimmy Johnston on Radek Faksa:
Here's scout Jimmy Johnston's take on first round pick Radek Faksa, a center from Kitchener of the Ontario Hockey League:

He’s got good size; he’s a smart kid on both sides of the puck. He’s good in the defensive zone, he’s good offensively. He can create offense and he can understand the other side of the game, too. He’s just a real good two-way player.

“He might be one of the best players this year in protecting the puck with his body. He uses his legs really well. He has the size and the reach. He played on the first power play and he played the point on the power play.

“There is a lot to like about him. He’s young and he’s got lots of growth left in him. He’s a big kid with lots of improvement potential. Plus, it’s an area we need.”

Ranked 11th in Bob McKenzie's Final Rankings:

TSN Scout Craig Button:
Radek is cut from the mold of a classic center. He moves around the ice looking for opportunities and ready to exploit the weakness in an opponent. He has an excellent feel for the game and knows how to get himself into advantageous positions without the puck and then when he does have the puck, he is extremely capable of taking advantage and creating chances. He can create offense in multiple ways, with his playmaking, his shot, and his willingness to engage physically. He is still developing physically but his skating base is very good without any noticeable weakness and as he becomes stronger, it will give him more speed and quickness to be that much better. He plays very well in defensive situations because of his IQ but is very adept at transitioning quickly to offense. He gains advantages with physical play and is willing to play in traffic and along the boards. When he matures, he will be a blend of skill and size which is both coveted and important to winning.
Elite Prospects:
A pretty aggressive and physical player with top level hockey sense and competitiveness. Capable skater that plays well along the boards. Handles the puck comfortably and has fairly good scoring abilities.
March 12th 2012 - The Hockey Writers - The Next Ones:
Faksa [Fack-sah] n. The moniker denoting an ice hockey prospect with a strong work ethic, good offensive and defensive skills and an astute ability at climbing draft rankings.

In every game Radek Faksa suits up in and on every shift Faksa skates the Czech pivot leaves a positive impression and it has reflected in his climb up the monthly draft rankings. Radek Faksa has propelled himself up to fourth among North American skaters on NHL Central Scouting’s mid-term ranking. Driven by a strong work ethic, Faksa is a player that competes with passion and a win-at-all cost approach. The offensive upside of Radek Faska is still relatively unknown but he does possess the skills to put up points at the next level. Faksa owns a hard accurate shot with good velocity and with soft playmaking hands and above-average puck protection skills he’s a difficult player to compete against. Radek’s best asset remains his overall balanced game and while he does not excel in one particular skill or area he offers a well-rounded package. The average spectator will notice that Faksa lacks a “wow” factor but his hockey sense is extremely underrated and it’s an area that has many people thinking he is capable of reaching another offensive level.

Scout’s Honour:
He’s not afraid to play in traffic, go to the net, take hits, deliver hits and he plays with a bit of an edge. He’s got real good playmaking skills, good puck ability … he’s got real good ability to get the puck through to the net and make plays.
– NHL Central Scouting’s Chris Edwards

We know he’s a world-class offensive player, but I think what makes him attractive to NHL scouts is the fact he might play earlier than expected because he’s able to defend at what I consider an elite level right now.

– Kitchener Rangers’ Head Coach Steve Spott

Faksa is an above-average puck-handler and passer. While he still needs to develop his body a lot, he shows effort in the physical game and will attack the high percentage areas.

– ESPN’s Corey Pronman

Faksa does some of his best work below the goal line using his frame to shield the puck well and cycle the play, outworking the opposition’s defense and then distributing the puck. He’s a quick skater who can really shoot the puck as well, and even sees some PK time (the role he played at the World Juniors).

– Future Considerations’ Brian Huddle

He’s a really smart player and is so dedicated to playing in his own end. Again, his size makes him very tough to match up against.

– OHL Prospects’ Brock Otten

ETA: 2-3 years

NHL Potential: Second Line Centre

  • Elite-level hockey sense
  • Good vision and playmaking skills
  • Heavy, accurate shot with good velocity
  • Strong puck protection skills
  • Coachable
  • Operates well in traffic
  • Good defensive awareness

Flaws/Aspects He Needs To Work On:
  • Improve faceoff prowess
  • Continue to develop strength/add mass to maximize his large frame
  • Engage himself physically more often
April 16th, 2012 - The Last Word:
This season Radek Faksa led all OHL rookies with 66 points in 62 games. Faksa came to Kitchener and showed that he was very quick to adapt to the North American game. Faksa pairs outstanding hockey sense and offensive instincts, with his very good vision and passing skills to be an excellent playmaker. He also has a good wrist shot with an excellent release. Faksa is an above average skater, with good speed and strong balance which makes him difficult to knock off the puck. He isn’t afraid to go into traffic and to take hits to make plays for the Rangers. For these reasons we believe Faksa will be a top 6 centre at the NHL level.

At 6’3, 202lbs Faksa has the great size that many NHL teams covet down the middle. Faksa uses that size effectively to protect the puck, to establish position in the offensive zone. We do however think that Faksa can use his size more effectively and we’d like to see him drive the net harder with the puck on his stick. We’d also like to see Faksa use his size advantage to be a more effective body checker, especially on the forecheck.

Faksa is also an excellent defensive player. He is often used to check the opponent’s top line, and is a key penalty killer for Kitchener. Faksa makes quick decisions and is equally adept at breaking up plays in both the neutral zone and his defensive end. He uses his size and smarts to angle opponents to the outside and keep them from dangerous areas. His long reach is an important asset in closing down passing lanes as well. Faksa however could stand to improve on his faceoff skills in order to be a true shutdown centre in the NHL.

Faksa is an intriguing prospect, who will definitely be highly sought after come draft day. His combination of excellent size and strong two way play will be in high demand. We’d compare Faksa’s maximum potential to that of Mikko Koivu of the Minnesota Wild. The major question in his game that keeps him a step below the elite centres in this draft is whether he possesses the real high end offensive skills necessary to be a first liner in the NHL. However we do believe he can definetely be a solid top 6 player, with an outside chance of being a top liner.
May 5th, 2010 - Ranked 10th by Corey Pronman:
10. Radek Faksa, Center, Kitchener-OHL

Faksa had a great first season in North America, rocketing to the top of the charts in OHL rookie scoring and playing a key role for Kitchener. Faksa is a pretty well-rounded player who doesn't have a clear weakness but is notably strong at all areas of the game. He's a solid to above-average skater with nice acceleration and who can get to a desirable top speed. Faksa's puck skills are above-average as well and he's certainly effective controlling the puck. He will show the ability to be a good puck distributer, though I have heard conflicting reports on this area of his game from scouts as some think he's just solid and other think potentially high end. How well he has adjusted to the OHL pace has been impressive as he makes quick decisions in a fast Junior league. Faksa shows very good dependability in the defensive end and scouts I've talked to rave about his defensive game which is high-end potentially and creates a lot of value when combined with his skill set. He can kill penalties effectively and has been regularly relied on to play high-leverage minutes in both ends. He also has no fear of getting involved with the physical game as he will battle hard in the corners, take his checks with the body, and drive the net with regularity.
May 26th, 2012: Maple Leafs Hot Stove
Strengths: The 22nd overall selection in the 2011 CHL Import Draft has put together a very impressive rookie season in North America. Thanks to a powerful 6’3 202 lb frame, he’s had no trouble adjusting to the more physical Canadian game. Faksa is the definition of a complete player, able to line up at all three forward positions, play a grind-it-out style of game, display some of the best two-way potential in the draft (right up there with Galchenyuk), and contribute on the scoresheet as well. He’s a character kid with a good head on his shoulders and will battle for you on every shift. Offensively, there is a well-rounded skillset that includes a quick, accurate wrist shot and some soft hands in tight around the net.

Weaknesses: Faksa has a solid all-around package of talent but it’s difficult to pinpoint any one particular outstanding skill that will vault him to an all-star calibre level. He’s not afraid to bang bodies but he’s not exactly an intimidating, physical presence at this point. He’s pretty slick and agile for a player his size, but could still improve on his acceleration and top end speed. On the offensive side, he’s no slouch and should be able to contribute, but probably won’t be one to dominate the scoresheet.

Draft Day Outlook: Faksa is currently pegged to go somewhere between picks #10 – 20 (16th overall on the ISS rankings) but given the parity of the draftboard, it would not surprise me to see him land in the top 10. An underwhelming playoff performance may hurt his stock and provide the Maple Leafs with an opportunity to move down if this is indeed their man. A projected 50-60 point two-way forward similar to a David Backes or a Bobby Holik type would not be unreasonable expectation.
June 19th, 2012: Canes Now Eye on the Draft
[Faksa] played for the Kitchener Rangers. He has size. He has been described as a smart, solid, two-way player, a "character kid" and a hard worker. Kitchener coach Steve Spott has made some comparisons to former Rangers star Gabriel Landeskog.

"He's a big prototypical center," MacDonald said. "He's got size, he's got good skill. He's a Czech kid who came into Kitchener and led the Ontario Hockey League in rookie scoring.

"He was able to play on the Czech national junior team at Christmas-time and he did well on that world stage. He's the kind of big, strong, creative player that most teams are looking for -- for that size and skill. You look for those players who can play on both ends of the ice and he represents that."

"Steve Spott is an excellent coach and has coached at the international level as well," MacDonald said. "We're always comfortable with players coming out of Kitchener and the way they've been developed. Their track record is pretty good."

One NHL scout was quoted as saying there's little "wow" to Faksa's game. But MacDonald said there are no big reservations about Faksa, who is listed at 6-3 and 203 pounds, or his game.

"I believe he's going to be a good NHL player and be able to play a top-six role on most NHL teams," MacDonald said. "It's a question of whether it will be sooner or later. Whether he can step in and do it right now, that's difficult to project. At some point in time he's going to be making a contribution in the National Hockey League."
June 21st, 2012: The Score Draft Profile
The Hockey News:

Rangers coach Steve Spott thinks he has another Gabriel Landeskog on his hands and though he has an obvious Kitchener bias, it’s worth noting Faksa was an OHL rookie.

In that time, the Czech import has already leveraged his physical gifts to make an impact. “One of the better forwards available in the draft,” said one scout. “Has size, skill and he’s a great skater. He has adjusted well over here and uses his size and reach very well.”

The youngest player taken to Alberta for the Czech world junior squad, Faksa acquitted himself well, but he will be even more integral next season when the tourney shifts to Russia. A concussion during the playoffs hindered Faksa’s post-season run with the Rangers, but the bird-dogs love the frame he is building his game around. “Big, strong and he’s going to fill out,” said another scout. “He’ll get some of that man strength. Real good poise with the puck.”
Kyle Woodlief - First Round Analysis
13. Dallas Stars: C Radek Faksa. Faksa should be a natural fit as a second-line center at the NHL level. He has excellent size/strength, good puck-handling skills, a laser shot, and is easily the best of the top forwards at playing away from the puck and in his own defensive end. His hockey sense is outstanding in all three zones, and he's a strong competitor who hates to lose.
Originally Posted by Brock View Post
I had Faksa rated 5th among OHL players.

It's damn close for me between Faksa and Brendan Gaunce as the 3rd best forward available from the OHL. I gave the nod to Faksa because I think he has a bit higher upside due to his edge in skating ability and skill with the puck off the rush. The thing about Faksa is that he's big, but he's also got an explosive first few steps and is surprisingly agile for a big man. He plays off the rush very effectively and is a terrific puck handler. He's just a solid all around offensive player. He's got a great shot which is very accurate, but can also find teammates at top speed. At times I've found him to be a little drive happy and predictable, but his ability to use his teammates is something I expect to develop with time. Faksa is an aggressive player away from the puck and is tenacious along the boards at both ends of the ice. He's particularly very intelligent defensively in his own end and reads the play exceptionally well. His defensive anticipation is terrific and the best of any OHL forward available for this draft. He had some injury issues down the stretch and into the playoffs and didn't look great, which could be a bit concerning. It's possible that he just got worn down in his first OHL season though. The key for Faksa will probably be the development of his physical game. It can be inconsistent. That isn't to say his effort is inconsistent; just his physical aggressiveness with and without the puck. I'd like to see him develop more of a mean streak to match his size, skating and skill combination. It would make him just that much more of an effective player at both ends of the ice at the next level. People always ask me how Faksa and Landeskog compare as players. And that's the big thing that separates them; physicality.

Last edited by BigG44: 06-23-2012 at 07:20 PM.
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