Mobile defender with good size and a bomb of a shot from the point. Plays a physical brand of hockey and has the potential to contribute in a variety of ways as an NHL defenseman.
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December 2022 – Heading into the World Junior Championships, Jiricek has adapted well in his first year as a pro in North America, posting 20 points (five goals, 15 assists) in 19 games for the Cleveland Monsters in the AHL. He will be relied upon playing for the Czechia team at the WJC and be a driving force if they plan to have any success and make it to the medal rounds. Mark Dubreuil
July 2022 – Jiricek has been selected by the Columbus Blue Jackets with the sixth overall pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. Nick Richard
December 2021 – Jiricek turned heads with his solid play at last year’s World Juniors as a draft-1 player and has continued to impress in his second season with Plzen in the top Czech professional league. On pace for one of the most productive seasons for a draft-eligible blueliner in league history and already playing over 18 minutes per game against men, Jiricek isn’t far off of making an impact in the NHL. Nick Richard
October 2021 – David Jiricek is a big piece of the future of Czech hockey which has not produced many quality defenders who could make the jump to the NHL in recent years. Jiricek has been playing pro hockey in Plzen since he was 16 years old. He has been tremendous so far this season and his coaches definitely see his talent as he averages just under 18 minutes on the ice per game. Jiricek has recorded three goals and eight points in 12 games with Plzen in top Czech league through the early part of the season.
Jiricek is a big, offensive-minded defenseman with one of the hardest shots in the draft. For a player his size, he is a fantastic skater with good edgework. Jiricek can lead the team on the man advantage as the powerplay quarterback by helping develop the play from the back end. He has great awareness of what is happening, so he can see plays unfolding before they happen. As you would expect from a player his size, he has a very heavy shot and he does a lot of damage with it. The Czech defender looks confident overall and plays an active game in all three zones. He is capable of rushing the puck up the ice and with his size it is very difficult to knock him off the puck or slow him down, helping him to be effective at gaining entry into the offensive zone. His size advantage allows him to be very aggressive defending on his own blue line and forcing the opposition to dump the puck into the zone rather than gaining clean zone entry. He is extremely physical and likes to lay big hits on opponents, especially along the boards. He still has areas of his game that require development, but Jiricek’s combination of size, mobility, and intelligence makes him a likely first-round pick in the 2022 NHL Draft. Marek Novotny