ColoradoAvalanche.com is profiling draft-eligible prospects leading up to the 2018 NHL Draft in Dallas on June 22-23. Martin Kaut is the No. 4-ranked International skater in NHL Central Scouting's final rankings. The Avalanche has the 16th overall selection at the draft.
Unlike many players projected to be taken in the first round of the 2018 NHL Draft, Martin Kaut spent this past season playing against grown men.
In 38 games for HC Dynamo Pardubice of the top men's professional league in the Czech Republic, the Brno, Czech Republic, native scored nine goals and added seven assists (16 points) as the youngest player on the team's roster. He finished the season with the second most points of any player under 20 years old in the league, only trailing Martin Necas, the Carolina Hurrricanes' 12th overall pick from the 2017 NHL Draft.
"He played in the men's league in the Czech Republic. A big winger with lots of offensive upside, good stick, good sense and good offensive ability," said Colorado Avalanche director of amateur scouting, Alan Hepple.
Kaut took his play to a new level in the Extraliga playoffs, recording five points (three goals, two assists) in seven games, tied for second-most points on the team.
He also produced on the international stage for the Czech Republic. Kaut had a goal and three assists in five games as a member of his country's gold-medal team as a 16-year old at the 2016 Ivan Hlinka Memorial Cup.
Video: Martin Kaut Scouting Report
More recently at the 2018 IIHF World Junior Championship, Kaut produced at a point-per-game pace with two goals and five assists in seven games as Team Czech Republic fell to Team USA in the bronze-medal game.
Kaut's exceptional play recently in the Extraliga playoffs and World Junior's led to a huge rise in the winger's draft stock. At the mid-term grading period, Kaut was NHL Central Scouting's 11th-ranked International skater--he finished the year fourth on the list. With more attention than ever from NHL teams, Kaut went to the Scouting Combine looking to impress, but he was unable to participate due to a heart condition that was discovered and required surgery.
Kaut received a routine procedure on June 15 and is healing well, according to reports. However, the medical setback should not affect where he is selected in the upcoming draft.
"The main thing is that I've got it, it's a routine procedure, nothing complicated," Kaut told reporter Adam Bagar of Hokej.cz in a story translated from Czech.
He now plans to rest until he goes to Dallas for the 2018 NHL Draft on June 22.
Since he could not stay in Buffalo for the Combine, Kaut hopes to arrive early in Dallas and speak with any teams and personnel that he may have missed. With a successful heart surgery behind him, Kaut is looking forward to his draft moment and hearing his name called.