Skip to content

Who is Ondrej Kase?

Kelvin Kuo / USA Today Sports

Great question.

And to be fair, it's one that more than a few hockey fans were asking after Game 2 of the Western Conference Final.

Ondrej Kase was the 205th overall draft pick of the Anaheim Ducks from the seventh round of the 2014 draft. So yeah, he's been a bit of a bargain. Especially after Game 2 Sunday night when he buried a massive game-tying goal halfway through the second period, knotting the game against the Nashville Predators at 3-3.

The goal was the 21-year-old's first career playoff tally in only his fifth NHL postseason game. His progression from hockey obscurity (Czech Extraliga) to the third round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs is staggering.

In 53 regular-season contests for the Ducks during the 2016-17 campaign, Kase managed a respectable five goals and 10 assists in 53 games. He's also spent some time developing in the AHL.

Over the past two seasons for the San Diego Gulls - Anaheim's AHL affiliate - Kase registered 14 goals and 12 assists across 39 regular-season games while adding five points in 12 playoff games.

His scoring caliber aside, Kase has been contributing in other areas, as well, owning a Corsi For rating of 61.29 percent in Game 2. However, according to Ducks head coach Randy Carlyle, Kase's speed and tempo are what make him effective.

" ... The one thing that’s been consistent with him, he’s been a type of Energizer bunny, can play with pace, can make plays in small areas, can create space for himself, and he’s not afraid to go into those areas," Carlyle said, according to Helene Elliot of the L.A. Times.

That's some high praise from a man known to be hard on his young players. If the rookie winger can maintain a consistent role in Carlyle's lineup, we should be learning a lot more about the Czech native in the coming days.

Following Kase's lead, the Ducks head to Nashville with the series all square at 1-1 with Game 3 set for Tuesday night from Bridgestone Arena.

Daily Newsletter

Get the latest trending sports news daily in your inbox