Kevin Fiala THW Close-Up:
Date of birth: 7/22/1996
Place of birth: Uzwil, Switzerland
Ht: 5’10” Wt: 181 lbs
NHL Draft Eligibility: 2014
THW The Next Ones Rankings (January 2014): 32
THW War Room Rankings (April): 23
Craig Button: 22
Kevin Fiala is a shifty, offensive powerhouse. He’s a winger who can play either side, has creative puck skills, and can weave in and out of traffic. An elusive skater, Fiala’s speed makes him a dangerous scorer with the puck on his stick. He has been climbing the rankings each month.
Fiala changes direction quickly and finds seams in defenses. His acceleration and balance make him difficult to contain, but I’ve noticed he’s not big on physical play. He will have to get used to playing with an edge if he wants to make it in the NHL. It shouldn’t be difficult to do if he hits the gym and gains some confidence.
The 17-year old played against men this season in the SHL and scored 11 points in 17 games (a tough feat for any young player). It will be a few years before he will make the jump to North America, but he should develop nicely in Sweden for the time being.
Where Will He End Up In June:
Fiala could go as high as #17. He’s likely to be chosen in the late 1st round or early 2nd round though.
“Fiala is a high-end offensive talent who plays with a chip on his shoulder. Positionally he is inconsistent at this stage of his development in terms of defending. But his creativity combined with quick skating, shooting, stick handling and passing skills — and the ability to find open spaces — make him dangerous every time he’s on the ice.
Fiala is a pure scorer at this stage in his development with several ways to create scoring chances. To succeed at the next level he will need to add some bulk and strength and refine the other aspects of his game to complement his offensive skills. A high risk/high reward prospect, projections on Fiala range from him becoming a Patrick Kane-type scorer to a player who puts up big numbers in Europe his entire career; never skating in the NHL.“
“Fiala is the 2014 Draft crops top Swiss prospect by far. His skill level is high, possessing quick and creative hands as well as a bullet shot. He skates well and displays impressive vision. He can turn the puck over though trying to avoid physical play. (November 2013)”
Aaron Vickers – Future Considerations
Fiala has played for Switzerland 12 separate times from the U16’s all the way to the U20’s. He’s won a bronze and gold medal for the Swiss
Risk: 1/5 Reward: 4.5/5
1st line scoring winger who will see time on the powerplay
Flaws/Aspects He Needs To Work On:
Hitting the gym
Fantasy Hockey Potential:
Offensive: 9/10 Defensive: 3/10
NHL Player Comparison:
– NHL comparison: Phil Kessel
THW’s The Next Ones prospect profile template design architect: Chris Ralph