Doesn’t sound like the Dallas Stars will rush Radek Faksa into playing at the NHL level.
“[Faksa will] spend the summer here with us, go to Traverse City [for the NHL Prospects Tournament], go to training camp and then go back to Kitchener, which is good because that’s where he should be,” assistant GM Les Jackson told Stars Inside Edge.
“He’s going to get a lot of ice there, he and the coach have a good relationship and I suspect he will take a big step next year.”
Faksa, the club’s first-round pick (13th overall) at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft, could’ve been a roster spot candidate for 2013-14. He attended Dallas’ training camp in January, played a couple of games with AHL Texas last season, has been described as a solid defensive center and, at 6-foot-3, 200 pounds, has the size to compete at the NHL level.
That said, his prospects of making the team shifted dramatically this summer.
New GM Jim Nill completely revamped the center position, acquiring Tyler Seguin and Rich Peverley via trade from Boston and Shawn Horcoff from Edmonton. Those three, along with veteran Vern Fiddler, will likely be the club’s Nos. 1-4 next season, with Chris Mueller and Toby Petersen also in the mix.
Because Faksa is only 19, he can’t play in the AHL full-time, as per the CHL/AHL 20-year-old rule. That means his only option is another year with OHL Kitchener, where he scored 31 points in 39 games last year, missing extensive time with a knee injury.
The Czech native said the knee is all good, and he’s looking to have a solid bounce-back campaign.
“Actually, my knee’s feeling pretty good. I was out six weeks and that wasn’t easy,” Faksa said. “I’ve had a pretty good summer and I’m looking forward to having a good season.”