21-Year-Old Right Wing – Washington Capitals
Jakub Vrana Contract Information:
Signed a three-year, entry-level contract with the Capitals in July of 2014. The deal carries a cap hit of $925,000 per season.
Vrana will have to fight hard for an Opening Night roster spot with the Capitals, CSN Mid-Atlantic reports. "He's going to have to earn it," Capitals GM Brian MacLellan said. "We're not going to give it to him. He has the potential to do it but his performance will dictate that."
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
Vrana is a speedy, shifty winger who knows how to snipe – he’s a natural goal scorer with good hockey sense. He spent last season playing with Linkoping in Sweden and delivered 12 goals and 12 assists in 44 games as a 19-year-old. Vrana hit North American ice right at the end of the season and immediately made a dent, totaling five assists in three regular-season games with Hershey, then two goals and four assists in 10 playoff games. He’ll start this season in the AHL unless he knocks the jocks off the Caps’ brass in training camp. That’s possible, but not very likely. A year or two in the A will help him learn to play tough along the wall, use his linemates and build some muscle. But it won’t take more than a few seasons for Vrana to ascend to a job in D.C. Dynasty-league owners should monitor his game or stash him if they have really deep rosters. Otherwise, play the waiting game.
A bit of a surprise selection for the Capitals in June’s draft, Vrana adds more top-flight offensive talent to an organization swimming with potential blue-chip point producers. A potential top-five selection heading into last season, Vrana was inconsistent during his regular season with Linkoping of the Swedish Elite League. However, Vrana turned heads at the IIHF Under-18 Championships, and his dominant performance was enough for the Capitals to take him with the 13th overall pick. Recently signed to a three-year extension by Linkoping, the Capitals appear content to let Vrana develop overseas in 2014-15, with the aim of getting him to North America in the next year or so. Possessing an NHL-caliber shot and Marian Gaborik-like upside, Vrana has all the tools to be an outstanding fantasy player once he’s further along in the development process.