June 5, 1990 |
|Height||6 ft 0 in (183 cm)|
|Weight||204 lb (93 kg; 14 st 8 lb)|
|NHL team||Tampa Bay Lightning|
|Played for||Rabat Kladno
|National team||Czech Republic|
|NHL Draft||66th overall, 2010
Tampa Bay Lightning
Radko Gudas (born June 5, 1990) is a Czech professional ice hockey player. He is currently playing for the Tampa Bay Lightning in the National Hockey League (NHL). The son of Leo Gudas, who competed for Czechoslovakia at the 1992 Winter Olympics, Gudas was raised in Kladno, and played for HC Rabat Kladno. He moved to North America in 2009, spending one season with the Everett Silvertips of the major junior Western Hockey League before the Lightning selected him 66th overall in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft. Internationally Gudas played for the Czech Republic national junior team at two World Junior Championships and for the senior team at the 2014 Winter Olympics.
Gudas played in the Czech Extraliga with HC Kladno during the 2008–09 season. Gudas was selected by the Everett Silvertips of the WHL in the first round of the CHL Import Draft with the 20th pick. Gudas was invited to the Kings training camp after going un-drafted in the 2009 NHL Draft. He would not be offered a contract from the Kings following training camp. He would then join the Everett Silvertips that fall. He would have a strong season with the Silvertips posting 7 goals, 30 assists, and 151 penalty minutes. The choice to play for the Everett Silvertips would payoff when he was selected by the Tampa Bay Lightning in the 2010 NHL Entry Draft with their 3rd round draft pick. Gudas would participate in the 2010 Lightning Developmental Camp that ran from July 10–14.
American Hockey League Career
Gudas participated in first NHL training camp in 2010 with the Tampa Bay Lightning. Gudas would be reassigned to the Lightning American Hockey League affiliate, the Norfolk Admirals. Gudas would quickly make a strong impression on his head coach Jon Cooper. Cooper had this to say about his rookie defensemen:
"There's nobody you’re going to put on the ice that will be more competitive or tougher than Gudas. His hits are not dirty. He just knows how to line a guy up. Teams don’t come across the middle that often when he’s on the ice. He’s a throwback. He is all meat and potatoes and he hits like a truck." -- Norfolk coach Jon Cooper
Gudas had shown a desire to lay big hits on his opposition, along with an extensive fight card in his rookie season. In total Gudas dropped the gloves 16 times, and amassed 165 penalty minutes in 76 games for the Norfolk Admirals. His point totals for that season were 4 goals and 13 assists.
He spent the entire 2011–12 season in the American Hockey League with the Norfolk Admirals. It was during this season that the Norfolk Admirals set a professional hockey record by winning 28 consecutive games. Gudas would help lead the Admiral blue-line with fellow Lightning prospect Mark Barberio to the 2012 Calder Cup championship in a four game sweep of the Toronto Marlies in the finals.
Norfolk Admirals and Lightning fans had been aware of Gudas ability to grow a great beard. It was during the Norfolk Admirals playoff run to the championship, that Gudas was noticed for his mighty playoff beard. It has been a signature look of his since then.
Following the dream season for the Norfolk Admirals, the Tampa Bay Lightning decided to end their affiliation with the Admirals. The Tampa Bay Lightning had entered into a multi-year affiliation with the Syracuse Crunch after parting ways with Norfolk. Due to the change in affiliation, Gudas would be assigned to the Syracuse Crunch for the 2012–13 AHL season. Gudas posted another strong season playing for the Crunch until he was recalled by the Tampa Bay Lightning on March 11, 2013. Prior to being recalled Gudas had 4 goals and 20 points for the Crunch. At the time Gudas lead the AHL with a plus/minus rating of plus-32. He was also fourth in the league with 207 penalty minutes.
Tampa Bay Lightning
Gudas played his first NHL game against the Florida Panthers in Sunrise, Florida. Gudas posted three blocked shots, and two hits in 15:20 of playtime. During this game Gudas would get himself noticed quickly in the NHL. This happened when he went to lay a hit on Florida Panthers forward Kris Versteeg. Versteeg attempted to avoid the hit, but still collided with him. Versteeg would end up leaving the game with what appeared to be a right leg inury. It was revealed two days later that Kris Versteeg would need to undergo season ending knee surgery due to the collision with Gudas. Gudas would finish out the remainder of the season with the Tampa Bay Lightning, playing in 22 contests. He posted 2 goals, 3 assists, 38 penalty minutes and was a +3 in his first NHL season. Gudas would rejoin the Syracuse Crunch at the finish of the NHL regular season to help the Crunch in the 2013 Calder Cup playoffs. Gudas would suffer a MCL during the Eastern Conference Championship series. Gudas would miss the first four games of the Calder Cup finals. Despite his return the Syracuse Crunch would fall to the Grand Rapids Griffins to finish out his AHL career.
Given his new 3 year contract, Gudas was a lock to make the Tampa Bay Lightning opening night roster for the 2013–14 NHL season. Gudas was thrust into a top-4 role on defense for the season, with Eric Brewer being moved to a more manageable 3rd pair role. Gudas continued to play his physical game that he had become known for in his first full NHL season. His rough and tumble in your face game also landed Gudas in trouble at a few points during the season. The biggest incident involved Panthers forward Scottie Upshall squirting Gudas with a bottle of water from after he had fallen in front of the Panthers bench. Gudas would retaliate by smashing his stick on the Panthers in frustration. He would be ejected from the game for his actions, though the Lightning would still go onto to win the game despite being down a defensemen for the remainder of the game. Gudas would not face supplemental for the play, along with the league rescinding the game misconduct he was issued from referee Tim Peel. Gudas also received a match penalty against the Dallas Stars on March 5, 2014. Though it was announced by Lightning General Manager Steve Yzerman that there would not be any additional disciple from the league. Gudas finished his first full NHL season by playing three games in the Stanley Cup playoffs for the Tampa Bay Lightning in a 4 sweep by the Montreal Canadiens.
On January 6, 2014, Radko Gudas was named to the Czech Republic men's national ice hockey team with teammate Ondřej Palát for the 2014 Winter Olympics in Soich, Russia. Gudas would miss two games in the Olympics due to an apparent illness. He would appear in 3 games and record 4 penalty minutes during his first Olympics. The Czech Team were eliminated at the hands of Team USA.
Regular season and playoffs
|2012–13||Tampa Bay Lightning||NHL||22||2||3||5||38||—||—||—||—||—|
|2013–14||Tampa Bay Lightning||NHL||73||3||19||22||152||3||0||1||1||9|
- Radko Gudas's career statistics at EliteProspects.com
- Radko Gudas's career statistics at The Internet Hockey Database
- "Gudas player profile". hockeydb.com. 2010-01-02. Retrieved 2011-02-03.