Vitek Vanecek


Vitek Vanecek

Czech hockey goalkeeper who plays for an American club New Jersey Devils in the most prestigious hockey league in the NHL since the season of 2022/2023. Before that, he played for Washington Capitals for three years. He is leaving New Jersey after two seasons and will play for the San Jose Sharks in the 2024/2025 season.

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 San Jose Sharks 

National Hockey League (NHL)
Pacific Division, West Conference


Born: Havlickuv Brod, 1996
Status: Married (wife Kristýna)
Languages: Czech, English
Nickname: Vaňous


 He enjoys sports in his free time as well. Apart from hockey, golf and tennis are his favourite sports. He likes to relax at the PlayStation from time to time.


He likes to spend time with his family. He enjoys everything about cars. During the season, he sticks to a healthy diet, but sometimes he cheats with fried cheese or quality steak. In the evenings he loves to have good chocolate :-). 


 A purposeful, cheerful, and energetic hard worker who likes to make fun of himself. An unmistakable smile and a happy face at every step.

 Life values

 The most important thing in life is family, and above all, health. Nothing in life is free. If you meet your dreams, success will come.


Sport agent: Jiří Hamal (GMG),
Gerry Johannson
Marketing service: Tomáš Pochop (BPR)
Current sponsor: Bauer

How it started

How it all started

An ordinary boy from Havlíčkův Brod, who was attracted by the hockey goal. He has played in the national team since he was 17 years old.

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 First time
on ice

He first got on the ice between the ages of 4 and 5, when he started skating in his native town Havlíčkův Brod.

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Center or goalkeeper

He started in HC Rebel Havlíčkův Brod and played in the offense. One time the team's goalkeeper did not come so the coaches contacted Vítek's parents. After a short persuasion, he managed to soften his parents and the team could boast a new goalkeeper.

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Waiting for
a chance

The first year in America, Vítek played in EHCL. He needed to learn English and fit into overseas hockey. This was followed by an engagement on a farm in the AHL. There were also difficult moments and thoughts of escaping from the US. Vítek waited and after 5 long years he got his first chance in the NHL.

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Hard work, diligence and enthusiasm

He worked hard every day to get into the top hockey league in the world. Behind his success and fulfillment of the dream was a great enthusiasm, diligence, endless hard work and above all the support of his parents and coaches.

Sport career

Sport career

  Nominations for the junior national team and subsequent engagement in Liberec for the youth were the first chapters of the success story.

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2009 – 2013

HC Rebel Havlíčkův Brod (CZ)

Already in his youth he got into the junior selection under the age of 17 and thanks to that the first league team Liberec looked for him.

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 2013 – 2015

Bílí Tygři Liberec (CZ)

In Liberec, he played for the junior team. He participated in the Junior Under-18 World Championship, where he helped the team win the silver medal. The second-year he was a guest in the 1st league for HC Benátky nad Jizerou, where he also played for A team. He participated in the Junior Under-20 World Championships for the national team of the Czech Republic.

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2015 – 2016

South Carolina Stingrays (ECHL) 

Washington Capitals chose Vítek in the second round of the draft in 39th place. 2015 was his first year in the USA, and the first successes were coming. Announcement of the goalkeeper newcomer of the month, goalkeeper of the week (2x), or goalkeeper of the month. Also this year, he participated in the Junior World Championships under the age of 20 for the national team of the Czech Republic.

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 2015 – 2020

Hershey Bears (AHL)

Transfer to the Washington Capitals backup team. Vítek continued to fight for his NHL debut. In addition to the number one goalkeeper Braden Holtby, there were still Pheonix Copley and Ilya Samsonov in the Washington team.

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 2020 – 2022

 Washington Capitals (NHL)

He succeeded, Vítek enters his first season in the NHL. Even though the season was shortened, he won the Rookie of the Month award. He is currently celebrating his fifth zero in the NHL and his third this season.

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 2022 – now

 New Jersey Devils (NHL)

Vítek handles the preparation for the new season in NJD perfectly. Out of 160 minutes played, he took 58 shots and only let in 3 shots. We believe that his form will hold and he will carry the same results into the season.

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 San Jose Sharks (NHL) 

Achievements and statistics

Achievements and statistics

      He reached the finals of the 2014 World Cup with a junior national team. And then it came. Draft to the Washington Capitals team, he was ranked as one of the best goalkeepers in the world in his year-class.

World Championships U18: Silver medal

Season: 2013/2014

 World Championships U18: TOP 3 players

 Season: 2013/2014 

 World Championships U20: Goalkeeper number one

Season: 2015/2016
Season: 2016/2017

EHCL: Rookie of the month, goalkeeper of the month/week

Season: 2015/2016 

AHL: All-Star Game nomination

Season: 2018/2019
Season: 2019/2020

NHL: Rookie of the Month

Season: 2020/2021, January 21


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Czech hockey team

Played games: 15
Ice time: 884 min.
Number of saves: 326
Goals Received (Average): 3,26
Success: 86,90 % 

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1st Czech Hockey League
Ice Hockey Extraligue

Played games: 32
Goals Received (Average): 2,42
Success: 91,50 % 

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Played games: 79
Number of saves: 1 950
Goals Received (Average): 2,68
Success: 90,80 %

Personal marketing


Personal marketing

  Vítek was given the opportunity to fight for his dream in the NHL. In 2021, it was reflected in its visibility. He had around 90 appearances in the media space in the Czech Republic and 65 abroad.

Social media

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36 800 fans

Show profile
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Vítek Vaněček
1 003 friends 

Show profile
Vaněček_kolaz Instagram

Examples of media output

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Bez frází (CZ)

In the interview "Lost" Vítek reveals how to get into the American NHL without a single English word.

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 Tweet, Wash. Capitals (EN)

The saves that helped Vítek win the NHL Rookie of the Month award. Definitely worth a look :-).

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Xhockey (EN)

Mom always said: Thank everyone who helps you. Even if it is a pole of hockey goal!

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When Vítek played for the Hershey Bears in the AHL, he still believed that he would play his first NHL game one day.


Participation in charitable and educational projects

Member of the Save Help group

The project brings together goalkeepers from the extra league, the NHL or the KHL to help improve someone's life with each successful saves.

Hockey school

Participation in hockey school and other charity events in his native town Havlíčkův Brod.

Charity events

Participation in Jakub Voráček´s charity events.

Photo gallery


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