Jakub Vrana was selected 13th overall by the Washington Capitals in the 2014 NHL Draft. The 5-foot-11, 185-pound left wing split the 2013-14 season between the senior team and junior club of the Swedish Hockey League.
Vrana, a native of Prague, Czech Republic, notched two goals and three assists in 24 games at the senior level and he added an additional 25 points (14g, 11a) in 24 games with the junior team.
After the Caps drafted the 18-year-old, Vrana travelled to Arlington where he stayed for the duration of #CapsDevCamp.
Now that you’ve had some time to reflect on your draft experience, what was the most exciting part for you?
To see the people here and the fans and the teammates and to meet the coaches. It was really nice to have my parents there, I’m happy that I could show them America. They have never been here, so that was really nice for them.
Was this your first time in America?
It is my second time. I was in Michigan for some national team tournaments.
Compared to the Czech Republic, what has been the biggest surprise about America?
The biggest difference is that you have big buildings and everything here is much bigger. Other than that, it’s kind of the same, but you have a different culture.
What did you think about the July 4th fireworks display in Washington D.C.?
That was really nice. It was amazing to see, the people are so happy and proud, and the fireworks, that was really nice.
In the 2014 World Junior tournament, since you were the leading scorer, what did you take away from that tournament?
That was a pretty good experience for me. we went to the final and it was great experience that I got.
What was the biggest challenge playing for the Linkoping senior team?
I did my best. All I could. I take the positive part of that, learning and the experience so that helped me a lot.
Do you have any hobbies besides hockey?
I like to play other sports. For example, ping pong and football (soccer).
Your English is very good, how did you become so fluent?
Everybody in Sweden speaks English and on TV everything is in English with a Swedish subtext.
What Motivates you to succeed?
I think everybody get a chance to do what you love. I’m doing that. I’m trying to have fun and I think that motivates me that I get that chance.
— Deborah Francisco (@NHLgirl)