Roman Cechmanek was born in Gottwaldov, Czechoslovakia on March 2, 1971. Tall and slender, 'Chemo' starred with Vsetin of the Czech Elite League for five seasons, winning championships in each of those five campaigns. Cechmanek also played on three Czech world championship teams and was part of the 1998 Olympic gold-medal winning Czech Republic team.
Cechmanek was the third selection of the Philadelphia Flyers in the 2000 NHL Entry Draft, and joined the Flyers in 2000-01 as a 29-year old rookie. It was quite a debut season -- second in the NHL with 10 shutouts, second in the NHL with a 2.01 goals against average, fourth in the NHL in save percentage (92.1%). Cechmanek went on to appear in the annual All-Star Game, was selected to the NHL's Second All-Star Team at the end of the 2000-01 season and was a finalist for the Vezina Trophy as the NHL's best goaltender. That season was no fluke -- both in 2001-02 and 2002-03, Cechmanek finished second in goals-against average and near the top of the league in save percentage and wins, while capturing the William Jennings Award in 2003.
In the spring of 2003, Cechmanek was dealt to the Los Angeles Kings.
On the international stage, Cechmanek has represented his homeland at the 1991 World Junior Championships, the World Cup in 1996, the 1998 and 2002 Winter Olympics and is a five-time member of its World Championship team (1995, 1997, 1999, 2000 and 2004).