The 2022 NHL entry draft was an eventful one for the New York Rangers bringing in six new selections. The team selecting three centers, two wingers, and a defenseman with their picks.
Adam Sykora (5’10 – 172 lbs) from Nitra, Slovakia was the Ranger’s first pick, being chosen 63rd overall in the second round, and made a great first impression with the media. He had a grin from ear-to-ear thrilled to be chosen by the Rangers. When asked for the player he models his game after, Sykora said, “I really like Brad Marchand because he’s a rat and he’s not scared of [bigger players], I try to play that way.”
Sykora, 17, recorded 10 goals and 17 points in 46 games with Nitra. The forward added two goals in five games for Slovakia at the 2021-22 Hlinka Gretzky Cup. He describes himself as a high-energy player that doesn’t hold back against opponents. He demonstrates good speed, physical strength, and some scoring ability.
Via the Alexander Georgiev trade to Colorado, the Rangers gained Bryce McConnell-Barker (6’1 – 194 lbs) 97th overall in the third round. McConnell-Barker, 18, from Soo Greyhounds, Ontario Hockey League (OHL), picked up 23 goals and 49 points in 68 games in the OHL. He added another 5 points in 10 playoff contests. The Rangers get a big kid who plays both sides of the puck well and looks to Patrice Bergeron as a model for his game. “I’m a two-way centerman and I work really hard all over the ice,” McConnell-Barker said, “I am good defensively but I can produce offensively by putting the puck in the net and making some plays too.”
Via the Brett Howden trade to Vegas, the Rangers received Noah Laba (6’1 – 181 lbs) 111th overall in round four from Lincoln Stars, United States Hockey League (USHL). Laba, 18, is committed to play at Colgate University after registering 39 points in 50 games with the Lincoln Stars of the USHL. The scouting reports have him as a power-forward that’s difficult to play against.
Drafted in the fifth round 159th overall the Rangers acquired defender Vittorio Mancini (6’3 – 215 lbs) from Omaha, Nebraska NCAA. Mancini, 20, played 38 games in the NCAA picking up 5 points and also spent time with Frolunda in Sweden. “He’s a player that when I was in Toronto we watched and liked,” Director of Scouting John Lilley said. “He’s a good defensive minded player that’s big. A high character young man.”