Tomas Kundratek

Czech Him Out

We’re over half way through the Ranger Countdown, and we’ve covered a number of veterans, as well as a good deal of the prospects under contract. The first preseason game is now just five days away and coach Tortorella will likely look to make some roster moves before then.

Tomas Kundratek, the subject of this Ranger Countdown profile, will be hoping that he can at least make the first cut and get a shot at some preseason action.

Player Profile
Drafted in the third round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, Kundratek was seen more of a player with potential, than a sure thing. A couple of years on, and it’s definitely still a work in progress, though this year he’ll be getting his first taste of pro action.

With so many players under contract between the Rangers and Hartford, it’s going to be a difficult time for the 20 year old defenseman. Having finished his junior eligibility with the Medicine Hat Tigers of the WHL, he’ll face a much bigger challenge in just getting ice time in AHL, or perhaps even be relegated to the ECHL.

A bit of an anomaly for a European born defender, Kundratek is not afraid to use the body, and will even mix it up on occasion. At the same time he’s been able to contribute a little offensively, and has slightly above average passing ability.

The 6-2, 200lb Czech native is maybe still growing into his body, and this might be his biggest test in the coming year…how does he match up physically to the grown men he’ll face in the pros.

He’s unlikely to compete for a spot this year, but a season or two of solid play in the AHL could turn attention back to this somewhat forgotten blueliner.

2009-10 Statistics
Team: Saskatoon Blades (WHL)
Stats: 2 goals, 33 assists and 62 penalty minutes in 65 games

Prediction
Team: Hartford Wolf Pack (AHL)
Stats: 2 goals, 15 assists and 48 penalty minutes in 76 games

Trivia
Eight players, including three defensemen, drafted after Kundratek have already made an appearance in the NHL. Only one other third rounder has.

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