Welcome to New York, Adam! pic.twitter.com/Ww37SMwvTo— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) July 8, 2022
Adam Sykora was the #NYR's first pick of the 2022 draft at 63rd overall!— Elite Prospects (@eliteprospects) July 8, 2022
Sykora was the No. 38-ranked prospect on the Elite Prospects final draft board.https://t.co/zmWeo2CbMw@NYRangers | #NHLDraft pic.twitter.com/L69W4G3QdS
Rangers at 63 take hard-working and aggressive LW Adam Sykora. Was Nemec's teammate so he can give the NYR the book on their rival's top pick LOL. Played against men and was an excellent two-way wing and penalty killer for SVK.— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) July 8, 2022
The Rangers took Adam Sykora at No. 63. He was a late riser who surprised a lot of us by making Slovakia's World Championship team. He's got good wheels and despite not being big, gets to the hard areas of the ice and competes. I ranked him 47th.— Chris Peters (@chrismpeters) July 8, 2022
Here we go, Bryce. pic.twitter.com/H8sCNhk7Sf— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) July 8, 2022
Rangers took a kid I love -- Bryce McConnell-Barker. Played for a deep Soo team and still put up points in a two-way, middle-six role. He will explode next year, mark my words. Good size, a hitter, fast, and no quit in his game. Had him ranked in the 30s.— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) July 8, 2022
#NYR No. 97 pick Bryce McConnell-Barker said he models his game off of Patrice Bergeron and Ondrej Palat.— Mollie Walker (@MollieeWalkerr) July 8, 2022
So I asked if he was good on faceoffs...
"Yeah I'm working on it. I'm pretty good."
Rangers sticking to the blood-and-guts theme by taking Lincoln power forward Noah Laba. Colgate recruit. Pain the ass to play against and makes his mark every shift, but an overager by a year.— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) July 8, 2022
With the 159th overall pick the New York Rangers select Vittorio Mancini a 6'3 200 lbs Defenseman from Green Bay of USHL. He had 4G 9A 13P in 33GP this season. He is committed to @omahaHKY next season.#NYR #NoQuitInNY #NHLdraft— Kyle Hall (@KHallNY) July 8, 2022
No. : Vittorio Mancini— New York Rangers (@NYRangers) July 8, 2022
No. : Maxim Barbashev
Welcome to New York! pic.twitter.com/qwm34PFY5h
Rangers at 161 take Maxim Barbashev -- brother of St. Louis Blues’ forward Ivan Barbashev. Plays a similar in-your-face style highlighted by physicality. decent puck skills but his M.O. is hitting, board battling, and applying forecheck pressure,— Steve Kournianos (@TheDraftAnalyst) July 8, 2022
#NYR select Maxim Barbashev 160th overall. I ranked him 91st overall.— Patrick Bacon (@TopDownHockey) July 8, 2022
Top Remaining Forwards:
1. Servac Petrovsky (27th)
2. Matthew Seminoff (37th)
3. Mathew Ward (43rd)
Top Remaining Defensemen:
1. Yegor Gribkov (30th)
2. Elmeri Laakso (45th)
3. Jake Livanavage (49th) pic.twitter.com/hvoujIuGBA
19. New York Rangers
Day 1 rank: N/A (no picks)
If you split the Rangers’ day in half, I’d have two very different opinions about it. So the final result is a bit of a mixed bag.
Soo’s Bryce McConnell-Barker (No. 57 on my board, drafted No. 97) looked better whenever I watched him this year than his 54 points in 78 combined regular-season and playoff games might suggest at a glance. He was a top prospect in the 2004 age group growing up and he often looks the part, with a dangerous, natural wrist shot (that he was owed a few more goals out of), above-average hands and processing, and the right instincts all over the ice. He’s also a June birthday. I expect him to break out in a more prominent role next season.
Slovak riser Adam Sykora plays determined with a knack for getting to loose pucks and making the most of his opportunities. I’ve seen him cut into a couple of his own looks on one shift, and work to play catch-up off the puck to get to a hole in coverage or pounce on a rebound on the next. Despite being smallish (he’s actually well built and strong for his size) and not particularly physical, his sticktoitiveness and overall skill level allowed him to play as a complementary winger against men this season. I suspect his small-area game will fit in even better on North American ice, too, and the Medicine Hat Tigers used the first pick in this year’s CHL Import Draft on him, so that looks likely.
There was some off-the-board overthinking that happened with three of their next four picks though, with sturdy Moncton winger Maxim Barbashev (who is still a long shot) as the lone exception.
2021 draft grades:
Day 1: No. 16 (overtime losers)
Day 2: No. 29 (losers)
New York Rangers: B-
The Rangers didn’t have many high picks but the few they had I liked what they did. I think both Adam Sykora and Bryce McConell-Barker have legit chances to become NHL players, even if likely at the bottom of a lineup.
New York Rangers
First rounders: None
Day 2 picks: Adam Sykora, C/W; Bryce McConnell-Barker, C; Noah Laba, C; Victor Mancini, D; Maxim Barbashev, LW; Zakary Karpa, C
Analysis: With no picks until 63rd overall, the Rangers still picked up two of my Top 100 players. Adam Sykora is the prize of the class as I think he really showcased his growth over the last season, culminating with his inclusion on the Slovakian national team at the World Championship. He’s going to need more time to grow, but he has speed and tenacity. McConnell-Barker was a player that had some high-pick buzz going into the season, but just hasn’t lived up to that quite yet and maybe needs some help developmentally. Victor Mancini is a real wild card pick, but he’s got size and some skating ability to build off of. Maxim Barbashev was a prospect that left me wanting more so often this year, but you can see the tools. It’s a decent class, but without any high picks, there wasn’t much they could have done to improve their grade significantly.