FlamesNation Top 20 Prospects 2018: #16 Milos Roman

The Calgary Flames came into the 2018 NHL Draft weekend with four selections at their disposal, starting with two in the fourth round. But they made an interesting move late in the fourth round, swapping their 2019 fourth to the Montreal Canadiens in exchange for an additional fourth in this year’s draft.

That move allowed the Flames to jump the queue and select Vancouver Giants centre Milos Roman. He’s only been in North America for a single season, but he’s a player that the club is very enthusiastic about. He comes in at #16 on our 2018 top 20 prospects list.

How did we get here?

Roman is another Flames prospect who’s been playing above his head – generating offense while playing against players two or three years older than him – for several seasons. Originally from Kysucke Nove Mesto, Slovakia, he’s playing most of his high-level hockey in the neighbouring Czech Republic in the HC Trinec organization.

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  • As a 13-year-old, he had 0.85 points per game in the U16 league.
  • As a 14-year-old, he had 2.30 points per game in the U16 league and 0.84 points per game in the U18 league.
  • As a 15-year-old, he had 1.17 points per game in the U18 league (and 2.00 points per game in a short U16 stint).
  • As a 16-year-old, he had 1.06 points per game in the U20 league.
  • As a 17-year-old, he was a full-time pro in the Czech secondary league (with 0.21 points per game).

After spending a year (at 17) playing against grown-ass men on Trinec’s bottom six, Roman opted to head over to North America. He was selected by the Giants in the Canadian Hockey League’s annual import draft. The Flames selected him at 122nd overall in the 2018 NHL Draft.

In addition to all his club hockey exploits, Roman has already played extensively with Slovakia at major international events: two World Under-18s, two Hlinka Memorial Tournaments and two World Juniors.

Stats, numbers, and everything therein

It was Roman’s first year on the smaller North American ice.

Games played Goals Assists Points
39 10 22 32

He played pretty well. He missed 33 games, through a combination of (a) playing in the World Juniors and (b) suffering a lingering ankle injury in his first game back from said World Juniors. But between dealing with injuries and living in a completely different country and playing on smaller ice, all told he fared pretty well.

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Even with missing 46% of the regular season, he was eighth on the Giants in scoring. On a per-game basis he was fifth in team scoring, and the four players ahead of him were older players with previous WHL experience.

For a deeper dive into Roman’s numbers, revisit Christian Tiberi’s writeup on him here.

Those in the know

During the site’s draft previews, Bill Placzek of Draft Site summarized Roman’s playing style:

Speedy centre-forward with a terrific first step, good stick, and puck handling prowess. It is difficult to move him off the puck when he is working down low. A dynamic tracking force on offense and aggressive forechecker who unearths pucks. Was slowed by ankle injury he incurred at the World Junior U-20. His downside is he isn’t interested in hard battles for pucks on the wall or traffic. He isn’t timid, just leery.

Flames director of development Ray Edwards noted several attributes that make the organization excited about Roman’s development potential:

This guy is a real thinker. He absorbs what you’re trying to tell him and teach him. He’s going to continue getting better and better because he has the will, the want, the character to do it. He’s not afraid to put the work in. The offensive part of his game is going to continue to get better the more he works at it. I think he’s going to get a great opportunity to play in every situation, create offense, be a top match-up guy, all the things that you want in your prospects.

On the horizon

With a few key Giants graduating to the pros – notably offensive leaders Ty Ronning and Tyler Benson – Roman will be both given more opportunities in high leverage situations and relied upon to create offense. He’ll be one of their most prominent players and potentially even their team captain. He’ll also be headed back to the World Juniors as a key part of Slovakia’s national team.

If Roman can maintain his 2017-18 performance over a full WHL season, he’ll be a strong candidate for an NHL contract after this coming season. If he can build upon it and potentially increase his scoring pace, he could potentially become a big steal for the Flames.

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#20 – Martin Pospisil #19 – Demetrios Koumontzis
#18 – Emilio Pettersen #17 – Filip Sveningsson


  • Off the wall

    For The Fall:
    Age/Birthdate:86/ November 6, 1999
    Birthplace: Kysucke Nove Mesto, SVK
    Frame:5-foot-11/ 187 lbs
    Position: Centre
    Handedness: Left

    You’re welcome bud!

  • Off the wall

    I saw a little bit of this kid during the playoffs against the Victoria Royals. I thought he was going to crush our Royals with his scoring.

    He had 5 goals in 3 games.
    Thank goodness little Matty Phillips did everything in his power to prevent the Giants from winning…. he even went down and blocked shots. The Royals finally beat them in game 7.

  • Garry T

    Looks like a good addition. The Flames have a propensity to draft guys under 6 feet and most NHL teams are finding larger men with height , weight, and the necessities in terms of speed and skill. Examples are Philadelphia, Boston , Los Angeles and Dallas. The Flames seem to be drafting well these days from the 4-7 slots. I do not think we should be trading away 1,2 and 3 picks under any circumstances. When we do, we seem to get ripped off. We now have 3 lines with the new additions that can play. The 4th. line should be young guys coming up. From that point on,
    we do not have a good sized contingent of graduates coming from the AHL
    whereas Vancouver, Winnipeg, Toronto, Boston, Philadelphia, Tampa and Buffalo are absolutely loaded. No more trades incoming whereby we are giving up picks please. We need to reverse the concept and get picks for our personnel leaving us.

    • oilcanboyd

      My googling showed Roman as 6 foot centre. He centred the top line for the Giants as a 17 year-old. Showing promise, needs to improve in upcoming season. Not signed yet.

    • Bean-counting cowboy

      “We need to reverse the concept and get picks for our personnel leaving us.”

      I don’t think it’s always that simple. When Frolik is going UFA the next year are you going to give him up for a 3rd or 4th round pick if we are in the playoff conversation and he’s forming an important piece of a shut-down line and is a top PK’er? Even if you know you’re not re-signing him, isn’t he worth more to the play-off push than that pick? What about Brodie and Hamonic that same year? Let’s say they want big bucks or they’re going to free agency, are they more important to the playoff push and dare I say Stanley cup push than the 2nd or 3rd rounder they might fetch?

      If we’re in win now mode those years, we may just lose some guys to free agency… that happens to the good contending teams. The real good teams have the young, cheap, good players to replace them… hope that’s the Flames in a couple years.

    • mrroonie

      Over the last 5 drafts, 22 of the 30 players picked by the Flames were 6′ or taller with another two at 5′ 11″. Of the other 6, only Fox was picked in the first 3 rounds. Several of the under 6′ players like Mangiapane, Phillips, Dube, and Fox have been quite successful which is why it seems there were more of them drafted.

      Good teams are made up of a combination of players acquired through draft picks, free agent signings, and trades. Sometimes you have to trade picks from the first 3 rounds to get decent players in return. In the last 6 drafts, Pittsburgh has only picked in the first round once (Kapanen) and they traded him away to Toronto in the Kessel trade. In that same time frame they’ve won two Stanley Cups.

  • BlueMoonNigel

    It is premature to say that Tre drafts well, especially in the later rounds, because how many of his draftees are solid everyday NHLers? As of now, zip. Even his prized pick, Sam Bennett, is still struggling mightily to establish himself in the NHL, and the jury is still out as to whether he’ll be a top 6 keeper or a bottom 6 grinder.

    2015’s darlings Andersson, and Mangiapane have only had a cup of NHL coffee until now, so who even knows if they can make the bigs and stick there.

    The same is true for all of Tre’s picks, so let’s not get ahead of ourselves and praise Tre’s draft record until his picks actually play for the Flames and make a contribution.

    Just to be clear, I am not criticizing Tre’s draft picks as his selections are still following the normal developmental timeline from junior to NHL. How many of them will become bona fide NHLers remains to be seen, so while most of the youngsters still look promising there was a time not so long ago when youngsters like Greg Nemisz, Joe Piskula and Ryan Howse were pegged to return the Flames to the days of glory.

    • FL?MES

      …while keeping in mind that Tre and his management team rely heavily on their scouting staff to help them pick who they feel is the BPA. Bennett was also the BPA and any manager would have picked him in that spot.

        • buts

          I think we all would have picked Bennett at #4 that draft year, I thought we finally lucked out and due to a bad shoulder got the number 1 pick fall into our lap. The guy has tremendous grit and will be a true playoff performer. The negative is I haven’t seen him see the ice well and be a playmaker. As a centerman you have to have vision and playmaking ability. Up until now he has shown that he’s a winger and I hope to god he steps up and improves but right now he’s a bottom six. Does BT wait or does he cut bait and maximize a return because one more bad year and you won’t get much for him. Personally I’d wait.

          • The Doctor

            The scouting reports on Bennett were absolutely gushing. Btw if you want a good news optimistic story about Bennett, consider this: he had his most productive year as a Flame under Hartley. That was his rookie season. His two year regression was under Gulutzan. Gulutzan is no longer here. That is a perfect scenario for a bounce back. I don’t think there’s any question that Bennett chafed under Gulutzan and was as happy as anyone to see Gulutzan go. Bennett was as much a victim as anyone of Gulutzan’s lousy, stupid player usage.

          • Redleader

            Exactly his Vision,decision making hasn’t been very good .but he’s still only 22 and looked like he was faster and stronger,I think he will be even faster and stronger this year and with some Confidence he will take off .he has a great shot and some moves .he needs to learn how to relax a bit and slow the game Down, more dump and chase would suite him better .too many turnovers.

    • FLT

      Fair point. The signs are encouraging, but he’s only had 3 years of drafts (I don’t count 2014 – that was Burke!) and the late rounders aren’t quite there yet.

      Also, your little reminder about how the Flames’ future used to depend on guys like Nemisz, Piskula and Howse made me throw up in my mouth. Thanks for that.

        • The Beej

          Actually Daniel Tkachuk was a solid pick.

          Just a terrible injury derailed his career. Not really well known. He is perceived as a bust but his injury changed his physical capabilities.

          Im sure some of you folks have had injuries that changed things for you. My knee will never be the same no matter how healthy I get.

  • Off the wall

    Can someone invent s sunscreen that’s 800SPF?

    It’s so darn hot here in Victoria, I’m baking from the inside out!

    Hey McGrattan, how’s the fire up Island? It’s smoky here…

    Stick to hockey Otw.

  • buts

    Looks like a good pick. There is another Slovakian who played last night in the U17 against Canada and looked very very good, it was there goalie David Borak. He made some unreal saves….reminded me of a young Fleury. Someone who I hope the flames scouts follow closely. You can never have enough good goaltending.

  • Brian McGrattan's Salute

    One of the things I’ve heard from Bill Peters was from an interview today: “we’re not gunna pigeon hole guys. We think we know roughly where guys will go, but we’ll let them show us come training camp. It’ll be a process”.

    So amazing to hear that. Pigeon holeing was a GG special! Guys like Sam are gunna be the obvious beneficiaries of a mindset like this, but so too will be others.

    Can’t wait for this season to start.

    • The Real SlimBrodie

      Yay!!! I’m glad the culture change isn’t just on the players. Sounds like the changes will be from top to bottom. The teams identity has to start with upstairs. I like Peter’s already.

      • Brian McGrattan's Salute

        Me too. And no exactly–coaching is waaaay more than what you do on the ice in-game. Its the culture, the ethos, the work ethic, the demands. Its how they treat players, how they configure lines, build chemistry. Leadership is crucial for a hockey team.

        We like to say all those little things that went wrong for us last season we’re just rotten luck, etc etc. Maybe some of it was, but it’s all those little things that are influenced and enmeshed with leadership, as well as luck, players, etc.

        I’m feeling good about this coaching staff. No one seems to be talking about Geoff Ward either, but I think he’s gunna make a huge difference. When is the last time we’ve had a good offensive minded coach?

    • oilcanboyd

      Another quote from Tre in an interview with Darren Haynes:
      “The style that we want to play, which is very up-tempo and is the way the league is now, it’s very pressure-related and you need four lines,” says Treliving. “You can’t rely on one or two lines to play 20-some minutes, a third line to play 11 and then three minutes for your fourth line. Those days are gone. The schedule is too taxing, it’s too compressed and every game is too important. You just wear people down.”

      Will be refreshing watching this style of play after watching GGs style of puck possession hockey.
      Can’t wait for this season to start.

        • oilcanboyd

          Tre also learned by watching GG’s boring possession game (at least GGs interpretation of it) and said enough is enough! Fans don’t like that and neither do I.

      • Jobu

        When you play 1 goal games you need to have your best guys out always. Seems like we played for the tie / 1 goal games way too much last year.

        Perhaps the mindset here is hit em early and hit em hard. Get that 2 goal lead and then let the lesser lines eat up some minutes and the young guys gain some valuable NHL experience.

        This is how coach Jobu would preach anyway

        • Brian McGrattan's Salute

          I agree. It’s also that “killer instinct” we’ve heard so much about–not only in getting that extra goal or two at the end of the game, but more so in the sense that we just keep playing from start to finish.

          A quick start is always great, but all too often we would kind of mentally break when the going got tough last season. A lot of that I blame on coaching and the lack of leadership, but its also in game style and strategy.

          The way I see it, a possession game is great for keeping a lead, and “building a goal” like GG used to say. No problem there. But what do you do when you are behind in a game? What do you do when you need to have an aggressive game, and fore/backcheck hard (i.e. Bennett)? What do you do when the refs are being dicks, or when you have to play more of a run and gun style game (Vegas, Bennett)?

          Again, I’m not saying I have a problem with a possession style game, but a team needs to be flexible. A team needs to be able to adapt to whats going on on the ice, not just on the chalkboard. I’m hoping Ward and Rebar can have that flexibility, and like some folks have recently said, just let the kids play more. I really think GG’s system had some merit, but it was so inflexible that it broke down. It was so limited that it couldn’t cover most aspects of the game.

          Look at the caps and the golden knights. The Knights have played a big role in changing the style of the entire league, and the Caps are definitely not playing the modern game, which I like.

          Ovi was a big part of it, but that’s a team I saw that could adapt, and play on their toes. Hockey can get too academic sometimes, and while that stuff can be valuable, the players are animals with instinct, drive, passion, and individually tailored skills. Why would anyone want to limit that entirely?

          Anyways, I’ll stop ranting here, but I definitely think that the flames can learn from not only Vegas, but also the Caps: flexibility and adaptation, passion and drive, a will to make things happen, and a solid overall team chemistry (not just line chemistry).

  • BringtheFire 2.O

    I personally think this dude looks pretty good and my opinion is the one that matters. He puts it all on the line shift after shift. When he matures I believe he will be a lock for the third or fourth line in a few years. GFG.

  • Bean-counting cowboy

    Given Tre’s comments to Darren Haynes regarding the need for 4 lines that can all play more minutes due to the grind of the season increasing with today’s speed and CBA mandated break, I thought I’d take a stab at some “somewhat far out there” lines. The true 4 line team:


    Not sure which of lines 2 and 3 opposing teams would be more afraid of? And Frolik on the 4th line?… that’s a 4 line team… three lines have two centers on them and three lines have a righty center.

    Or to get all kinds of crazy:

    Only line 1 here requires significant sheltering where you can get it. The other three I’d throw out against just about any opposing lines.

    Tons of options for Peters to work with.

      • Brian McGrattan's Salute

        If you’re gunna have Sam in the top six, I think you should have him play RW. He’s historically looked a lot better there, and likes to breakout into the ozone from that side. It would be preposterous because of all the centres we have, but while we’re at it here, a line of


        would be pretty damn fun.

      • withachance

        There shouldnt be a drop off in lines if you want to truly roll out 4 lines. Just because Bennett’s listed before Tkachuk doesn’t mean he’s a better player.

        Joining in on the fun here with my take on 4 lines:

        Jonny – Monahan – Tkachuk
        Benny – Lindholm – Neal
        Mangi – Backlund – Frolik
        Ryan – Janko – Czarnik

        • Brian McGrattan's Salute

          Johnny — Monahan — Bennett
          Chucky — Jankowski — Neal
          Mangiapane — Backlund — Lindholm
          Frolik — Ryan — Dube/Czar

          1. Scoring, well balanced, Bennett bounce back year (and he’s better on RW); Johnny and Money play in tight in the slot. Bennett can be a good bulldog there, as well as just play that power forward RW that would really complement the finess of the other two. Downside is Sam takes a spot away from someone else without having a breakout season. Hard not to imagine him doing amazing here tho no?

          2. Offensive line, secondary; dump and chase, cycle game and high shot and danger line. Good for breakouts? PP structure would almost work here. Good development of Janko, but downside is that Janko struggles.

          3. Backs is put on a line to develop Mangiapane; possession line, defensive line/clutch line, and tertiary scoring line. Some sweet offensive potential, but not too much pressure. Downside is that Lindy and Backs are in the bottom six.

          4. Honestly, if this is our forth line we are pretty gosh dang set. Two vets playing solid shutdown minutes, still able to chip in offensively, and generally just play a complete game. A forth line a coach can trust. Speed isn’t too bad with Frolik and Ryan (though I’m not sure about Ryan’s speed?), and Dube can really skate/Czarnik to a lesser extent.

          I think this lineup goes beyond the “balance” argument, and is also effective both offensively and defensively. Obviously there are a lot of ifs, but I really like the idea of Sam Bennett getting a “sink or swim” tryout on the first line. I’m still hopeful for the kid, especially now that GG is gone. Why not give him a chance to get back to his 4th overall level of play? Also, I’ve said it already in previous posts, but I would be tickled pink if this was our second line.

          A third line of Mange-Backs-Lindholm is very strong. Mangiapane isn’t stuck on the forth line (Dube would do a better job–Mangiapane is likely not a good forth liner/checker, but has the skillset in my opinion for top 9/6), and Zebulon’s style of play would fit real nicely with Backlund I think–he’s kind of like the more offensively minded Backlund, no? I also just like the idea of Ryan as 4c. It just feels like a really deep lineup to me, and I love rooting for the underdogs, so I feel really good about letting Sam try our 1RW for a while, and Janko 2C.

          • FL?MES

            Let’s have a big cheer for all the rosters without Brouwer in them!

            I still can’t believe it happened. Thought we’d have to suffer with that lingering fart for one more season.

          • Jumping Jack Flash

            Nothing that I have seen from Bennett demonstrates that he would be the top choice for 1RW. We have so many better options now without having to go down that road.

            I think the top 6 are pretty firm with Janko having an outside chance to center Neal and Tkachuk otherwise this falls on Backlund.
            I can’t see Frolik being bumped to the 4 th line after one bad season. I can see the team reuniting Bennett with Backlund and Frolik.
            This would put Ryan as the 4C flanked be Mangi and Czarnik.

            Finally, everything that Tre has said and done supports the idea of trading Stone before the season starts. Tre was adamant about not having high priced players on the 3rd pair. This does not fit the model. This will open a spot for Ras.

  • The GREAT WW

    I hope not one of our players is training with a Gary Roberts this off season.
    Every player who trains with that idiot is injured for training camp……


      • The GREAT WW


        Remember 2 years ago when everyone (except WW) said GG was going to lead the Flames into the promised land?

        Don’t follow the crowd kid, make your own way in life….


          • Jumping Jack Flash

            I am hoping there is a correlation between hair and coaching ability….Peters hair is Pete Rose-esque and not in a good way….which can only mean that he is going to be a great coach for the Flames.

          • The GREAT WW

            So; Right after Stajan scored the series winning goal against the Canucks; you (stajansfinalpaycheck3.5) was there to declare that GG was trash…… likely story….give us a quote….

            Go back in time and see that WW had to say about GG before he even coached a single game….”terrible leader”


          • StajansFinalPaycheck 3.5

            My quote….after Stajan scored? It was probably “Even the sun shines on a dogs ass some days”. My quote when GG was hired was probably “Even the sun shines on a dogs ass some days but why did they hire a useless dogs ass?”. Or ” who the hell is Glen Gulutzan…..google….why the hell did they hire a guy that has won a total of nothing….ever”. Or….. I dont remember what the hell i said because according to BTF i am old.

        • Off the wall

          WW, sheeple?… where do you come up with these names?

          It’s funny as hell though.

          I think your favourite remark was, “ Would you follow GG into battle?”

          You’re a classic Wally. Don’t ever change.. not that you would!

          • FL?MES

            Question for OTW (and others) seeing as we have so many old people on this site when the Flames were still in Atlanta – who was your team when you were kids?

            I sheepishly admit that I liked TO, especially when they played Montreal on Hockey Night in Canada. That said, I did wear a Canucks jersey at practice for a few years to be different, I guess. Everyone else wore Toronto, Chicago and the odd Montreal jersey.

          • BringtheFire 2.O

            Two shriveled up old peas in a pod. FYI sheeple is in no way origional or his. Heck I heard my father say it back when I was in elementary school. That was a while ago, and Im still years younger than you two old farts. Also I dont remember people on here planning a parade when GG was hired. There were alot of ??????? Statements.

          • Off the wall

            I grew up (70’s) cheering for the Maple Leafs. My older brother was responsible for that.

            We would play hockey all the time. Sittler to McDonald, he scores!
            I loved Borge Salming.. I was pretty young, but I remember how amazed I was with him. He was a rare Swede..back then my brother and I would usually fight about who gets to be him.

            Half the time I ended up conceding, cuz he would beat me up, if he didn’t get his way.

            Brothers are sheep asses when you’re young!

  • Off the wall

    I have a thing about numbers.
    Right now we sit at 99 comments. Sorry folks can’t let that happen. Reminds me of …. you know who.

    My wife and I went go carting a few weeks back. We were waiting for our turn in the lineup and they said they had 2 go-carts available.
    The only go carts we could use was 35 and 36.

    I didn’t want to use either, cuz 35 has no memorable Flames number and 36 was Brouwer’s number. I passed. I told the people behind us to go ahead.
    I also warned, “whoever drives #36, it’s going to be SLOW.

    My wife understands my obsession, but it doesn’t make her life easier. I got #34 the next go round. Otw, lapped 3 cars!

    See , numbers matter!

  • T&A4Flames

    “he could potentially become a big steal for the Flames.”

    Let’s just say that if any of these 2018 draft picks make the big league, it’ll be a steal. Rounds 4-7 rarely turn out out to be anything.