Preds Recall Kevin Fiala

Source: Bruce Bennett/Getty Images North America

Another young face has been called up to the big league and this time it is 18-year-old Kevin Fiala. Here’s an excerpt from the official Predators Presser:

Fiala, 18 (7/22/96), has amassed 17 points (9g-8a) in 26 American Hockey League games since making his North American professional debut with the Admirals on Jan. 21. The native of St. Gallen, Switzerland, started the 2014-15 season with HV-71 of the Swedish Hockey League, posting 14 points (5g-9a) in 20 games – tied for the fourth-most goals and assists, and sixth-most points among SHL junior players – before being assigned to Nashville’s AHL affiliate on Jan. 15. Fiala also represented Switzerland at the 2015 World Junior Championship, being named one of the nation’s three best players for the tournament while tying for fifth among all skaters in goals (4g-1a-5pts, 6gp).

The 5-10, 180-pound winger was a finalist for the 2014 SHL Rookie of the Year Award after tying for the lead in points among all under-18 SHL players with 11 (3g-8a) in 17 games for HV-71. He also represented his homeland at the World Junior Championship, Under-18 World Championship and World Championship in 2014, becoming just the third player ever to participate in all three tournaments in the same year (Andrei Kostitsyn and Vadim Karagan, Belarus in 2003). Fiala led the Swiss in points at both the under-18 tournament (4g-5a-9pts, 5gp), was named one of the nation’s three best players in the process, and World Juniors (1g-4a-5pts, 5gp) as the team’s youngest member. At 17, he was the youngest member of Switzerland’s entry at the World Championship by three years, posting three assists and a team-best +3 rating playing alongside Predators defenseman Roman Josi.

Fiala is poised to become the sixth member of the 2014 Draft to appear in the NHL, joining teammate Viktor Arvidsson (112th overall); Aaron Ekblad (FLA, first overall), Sam Reinhart (BUF, second overall), Leon Draisaitl (EDM, third overall) and David Pastrnak (BOS, 25th overall).

He speaks five languages – Czech, English, French, German and Swedish – and is on Twitter @KevinFiala22.

So, I am digging that last sentence – five languages? A man after my own linguistic heart. The young winger will wear No. 56 and there’s a good chance he’ll see have his NHL debut tonight. Like Viktor Arvidsson, Fiala is being recalled due to “emergency conditions”, but as to who he is being recalled still up in the air. I am, however, almost 100% it’s due to an injured Viktor Stalberg.

Simon Moser joins SC Bern

fdfdIn case you start digging through the Preds and Admirals roster and cannot find him, Simon Moser will be starting the season with Schlittschuh Club Bern, better known as SC Bern. This may be news to some, but Moser has a valid contract with SC Bern until 2015. However, said contract includes a NHL out-clause until November 15th, which means if he is given an offer from a NHL team before that date, he can leave the club without retribution. If he does not accept an offer from the NHL by November 15th, the 25-year-old Swiss will finish out the 2014-15 season with SC Bern. Now, you may be asking, “Why hasn’t Nashville presented him anything?” Well, they have. Nashville pitched Moser a qualifying offer for the League minimum at the beginning of July, but turned it down because of a low AHL salary.

So, unless Nashville comes back with a better offer (which, IMO, they won’t), Moser may be smitten by a deal from another NHL team, or could be sticking around Switzerland permanently.

It’s Off to Europe for Rinne, Hornqvist, & Josi: Who’s Next?

Pekka Rinne, Patric Hornqvist, & Roman Josi have hit the trail to Europe.

With all of September’s preseason games cancelled and three already missed, the Predators (along with players across the league) are struggling with the decision of wether to wait out the NHL Lockout or head over seas to continue what they do best.

Alexander Ovechkin, Ilya Kovalchuk, and Alexander Semin have been vocal about their departure for the ‘Mother Land’, prompting fellow NHLers to consider the same decisions, wether they nestle in the KHL or not.

Rumors have been swirling around particular Preds, with Martin Erat supposedly returning to the Czech Republic and Sergei Kostitsyn possibly signing with a KHL team, but the only truth for Predators fans is this: Pekka Rinne has signed with a KHL team, Patric Hornqvist signs with Sweden, and Roman Josi (who actually made his announcement earlier in the week) returns to Switzerland.

Amidst rumors of him signing with the Finnish Elite League, Pekka was adamant about settling with a KHL team instead of one in his native Finland. Rinne will be goaltending for Dinamo Minsk out of Belarus during the duration of the lockout.

Patric Hornqvist naturally returned to Sweden, signing with Djurgården, a key team of Sweden’s Allsvenskan league. Preds’ first rounder Pontus Aberg is active on Djurgården’s roster, giving Hornqvist the opportunity to help the youngster prepare for (maybe one day) a shot in the National Hockey League.

Roman Josi was the first to announce his departure to Europe under the Predators roof, shipping back to S.C. Bern of Switzerland. Former Pred J.P. Dumont played for S.C. Bern last season, gaining eight goals in just 31 games. Josi is expected to hit the ice for S.C. Bern on September 29th.

With Pekka, Patric, and Roman packing up and heading overseas, it’s only a matter of time before the other members of the Nashville Predators inevitably agree to the same decision. As mentioned, SK74 and Martin Erat are already in negations with European teams, so only time will tell when they sign.

The NHL and NHLPA have scheduled a formal meeting on Friday to discuss options on the current lockout, hopefully coming to some sort of an agreement.