Our penultimate player on this list is a goaltender. Jakub Vondras was the Canes’ sixth-round selection at 171st overall. NHL central scouting put him 10th among EU netminders. While this is quite low for a specialist position, when you’re in the sixth round, it is basically a free shot. If Vondras becomes anything, it becomes fantastic value. If he doesn’t, it’s not something the Canes should be panicking about.
Vondras bounced around last year between the U20 leagues in Czechia last year. He did eventually make two appearances in the third tier of men’s hockey, but that is not what anyone cares about. He seemed to have some good numbers, posting a .926 save percentage and a 2.00 goals-against average in the second tier of the under 20s leagues. In the main U20 league, he had a 2.13 goals-against average and a .915 save percentage.
Darren Yorke again made statements about the teams’ ability to take Vondras in the sixth round, calling the shot-stopper intelligent and athletic. Yorke sighted his side-to-side movements as one of his big strengths as well as being able to track the puck with constant shoulder checks. It sounds like the organization liked him from the start. If that is the case, there’s going to be a reason that they liked him.
Goaltenders are often unpredictable. Being bad in one league doesn’t mean they will be bad in another, and just anything seems to be able to change the performances of a shot-stopper. Carolina’s goaltending pipeline seems to be relatively loaded so we will see what happens with Vondras in the future. If he ever gets to North America, he’s been good value for a sixth-round pick.