Courtesy of RTVS

Fantasy Summary

One of the best defensive forwards in his class, with decent puck skills and goal-scoring abilities. Hard worker with second-line upside if he can work on his lack of pace.


Observations

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June 2022 – Adam Sýkora was a consistent riser this year as he caught the eye of most scouts watching HK Nitra play for his teammate, Simon Nemec. Sýkora is one of the youngest players in the 2022 draft class with a September 2004 birthday, and not only produced decently at the pro level in Slovakia with 12 goals and 22 points in 65 regular season and playoff games but had a very clear and projectable identity.

The winger is among the draft’s most consistent and intense forecheckers, applying pressure and closing passing lanes with an active stick. He is also one of the better defensive forwards available due to a combination of excellent scanning habits, awareness, and willingness to help his team in its own end. While he is at his best off the puck, he possesses a good shot which he needs some space to really fire off, and his intense style of play leads to some dirty goals around the crease. He is not a high-end playmaker, but he does drive the net hard off the puck to create space for his teammates which frees them up to make creative plays. Sýkora will likely make the NHL someday, as his identity is a solid one, but he will need to work on his two-step acceleration to really enhance his current style of play and facilitate the transition to North American ice. His ceiling could resemble something in the mold of Artturi Lehkonen; a player who lacks the finishing ability and offensive instincts to produce at a high rate, but who drives excellent offensive and defensive results when on the ice and who brings consistency and intensity to the table. Sebastian High

May 2022 – Sýkora played the season on a very strong Slovak team in HK Nitra, spending most of his season on the pro squad and earning 10 goals and 17 points in 46 matches, while adding five points in 19 playoff games. He played in the shadow of fellow draft-eligible Simon Nemec, but put up respectable numbers in a pro league while being one of the youngest draft-eligibles in his class as an early September 2004 birthday. He also represented Slovakia at the Men’s Worlds, scoring two goals and adding an assist in six games.

Sýkora is among the best defensive forwards in his draft class. He understands defensive positioning very well, directs opponents into unfavorable areas, and approaches them at angles that maximize the odds of him escaping contact with the puck. He forechecks hard, backchecks diligently, and makes himself troublesome for his opponents on loose pucks and broken plays. On top of that, the winger has decent hands, a surprisingly good shot from medium range and some playmaking tools that are foundationally sound but need refining. He can find seams and exploit them, but doesn’t create them as often and tends to go for safe passes rather than take risks. The main concern with Sýkora is his lack of pace, especially with the puck, but some fine-tuning to his skating mechanics as well as the inevitable physical growth ahead of him should iron that out. He mans the boards well with his puck-protection mechanics already, and that should only become more of a strength as he matures physically.

Sýkora could well be a second-line penalty-killing specialist when all is said and done, and has a fallback game as a bottom-six checking forward that makes him a safe pick-up in the late-first to early-second round. Hadi Kalakeche

 

Attributes
Fantasy Upside 7.5
NHL Certainty 8.0
Country SVK
Position RW
Roster Type Draft Eligible
Shoot/Glove Left
Date of Birth September 7, 2004
Height 5‘10”
Weight 172 lbs
Drafted No

Stats

 Season Team League GP G A TP PIM      Playoffs GP G A TP PIM 
 2015-2016 Slovakia Selects U12WSI U126 2 24 4|        
 2016-2017 Slovakia HMS SelectQC Int PW2 0 00 0|        
 2018-2019 HK Nitra U16Slovakia U1632 22 4163 31|        
  HK Nitra U18Slovakia U1828 6 410 2|        
 2019-2020 HK Nitra U16Slovakia U162 1 34 2|        
  HK Nitra U18Slovakia U1838 21 3051 8|        
  HK Nitra U20Slovakia U209 3 58 0|        
  Slovakia U16 (all)International-Jr13 4 15 27|</