We all felt that Matt Niskanen would not return in a Capitals’ sweater for the 2019/20 season. And now we know where he will he playing and where we will face the talented defenseman next season.
The Caps announced this morning that they have “acquired defenseman Radko Gudas from the Philadelphia Flyers in exchange for defenseman Matt Niskanen.”
Here is what we know about Gudas from the press release:
Gudas, 29, a native of Prague, Czech Republic, recorded 20 points (4g, 16a) in 77 games with the Flyers last season, his third career season with at least 20 points. The 6’0”, 204-pound defenseman’s 51.14 goals for percentage at five-on-five ranked first among Flyers defensemen and second overall on the team (Claude Giroux: 53.13) among players with at least 30 games played. Additionally, Gudas’ 202:06 total penalty kill minutes were the second most on Philadelphia.
In 416 career games between Philadelphia and the Tampa Bay Lightning, Gudas has collected 105 points (24g, 81a) and recorded 579 penalty minutes. Gudas, who was selected by Tampa Bay in the third round (66￼overall) in the 2010 NHL Draft, ranks fourth in games played by a defenseman from that class. Additionally, Gudas’ career 51.88 shot attempt percentage (6,487 shot attempts for, 6,018 against) at five-on-five ranks 23￼ in the NHL among active defensemen with at least 400 career games since 2012-13, Gudas’ rookie year. Since 2012-13, Gudas ranks second among NHL defensemen in hits (1,484).
Internationally, Gudas appeared in the IIHF World Championship for Team Czech Republic, recording four points (1g, 3a) in 10 games. In 34 career international games, Gudas has 10 points (4g, 6a).
We will have more to say about Matt and his contribution to the winning Capitals and what Gudas brings in exchange. For now we say thanks to Nisky. It was an awesome experience to have you suit up for the Capitals.