World Junior Championship: Radek Faksa And The Czech Republic

Richard Wolowicz

The World Junior Championship starts on the 26th December. What can Radek Faksa and the Czech Republic do?

Radek Faksa will be heading to his third WJC this December and will play a leading role on the Czech Republic's team.

Last years WJC came amidst a troubled season for Faksa where he was unable to find his offensive production. This year he has been more productive on a Kitchener Rangers side that hasn't found the back of the net often.

He played well for the Czech Republic's team in the 2013 WJC but he couldn't find the back of the net for them either. He did perform his defensive duties effectively however.

So what are the expectations for Faksa and the Czechs this year?

Firstly they have a young side with 23 of their selection roster being eligible for the 2014 NHL Draft. Though some got experience in the previous WJC they aren't a side that boasts the drafted talent of either Canada or the United States.

They do however have two prospects who are expected to be drafted in the first round of the 2014 NHL Draft in their lineup: David Pastrnak and Jakub Vrana. Both play in Sweden and are considered excellent talents that might surprise.

Radek Faksa is likely to take up a role as one of the most, if not the most experienced, player on the team. He will probably be centring their top line and the Czechs need him to produce offensively. They face tough opponents with the United States and Canada and if they want to cause an upset will need to enter the tournament at full steam.

It seems likely that the Czechs should be able to get into the Quarter Finals from their group, whether they can reach the Semi-Final is more questionable.

Last year they reached the Quarter Finals but were on the receiving end of a 7-0 shutout by the United States.

They are in Group A along with Canada, United States, Slovakia and Germany.

The good news is that the WJC games should be relatively easy to watch in both Canada or in America. TSN and the NHL Network are covering the tournament.

Czech Games:

Friday 26th December: Czech Republic vs USA 10.30CT

Saturday 28th December: Canada vs Czech Republic 10.30CT

Monday 30th December: Czech Republic vs Germany 6.30CT

Tuesday 31st December: Slovakia vs Czech Republic 6.30CT

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