With the 48th selection of the 2020 NHL Draft, the Montreal Canadiens have selected Jan Myšák from Hamilton Bulldogs of the OHL.
Jan Myšák was fairly underrated through the first half of the season playing in the Czech Republic with HC Litvinov in the top men’s league in the country. He collected five goals, four assists, and nine points in 26 games – the most points by a junior player in the league. In the middle of the season, he made the decision to come over to the OHL and the Hamilton Bulldogs, breaking out and making people notice.
In his new environment, he immediately made an impact and turned heads for those who weren’t confident in the prospect. The 6-foot-0, 181-pound forward also dressed for Team Czech Republic at the 2019 Hlinka Gretzky Cup and 2020 World Junior Championship.
THW Prospect Profile Excerpt
“He was playing with HC Litvinov of the Czech league prior to his jump overseas, but when he arrived in the OHL with the Hamilton Bulldogs, Jan Myšák’s offensive abilities really started to a talking point for this young winger.
Related: 2020 NHL Draft Guide
“Prior to the season being cancelled, Myšák had 15 goals and 25 points in 22 games played for the Bulldogs and seemed to be finding his way with the junior club. It’s safe to say that his transition to North America came quite smoothly and may have helped his draft stock – at least when it comes to THW’s writers.
“His instincts are right where they need to be for him to be an offensive threat both from a shooting standpoint as well as being a playmaker. He sees the ice well and opens it up for his linemates by creating off the rush. On top of that, Myšák can skate among some of the best in the first round of this draft and that allows him to separate himself from defenders to make plays in the offensive zone.
“As a defender, he’s able to pick up on plays well. He cuts off the passing lanes and does a good job of being an outlet for teammates in the transition game. While he may not have had the performance that some of us were expecting from him at the World Juniors, his play on the international stage shouldn’t be judged as harshly with how the Czech Republic’s tournament went as a whole.
“That said, if Myšák can put everything together, he has to be looked at as a lottery pick in the upcoming draft – especially because he’s a smaller player that doesn’t mind playing with an edge.”
How This Affects the Canadiens Plans
After landing Kaiden Guhle and Luke Tuch with their first two choices, the Canadiens go from defender and grit to pure skill in Mysak. The Czech forward was widely expected to be a first rounder, or at the very least a high second. Landing this player here could very much look like a steal in a couple of years when he’s knocking at the NHL’s door.
That Canadiens are very much a team that should be on the rise and they have a wealth of prospects ready to break into the league. That should give Mysak the time he needs to develop his game, and be ready for the next step. It’s not hard to imagine him as a top-six player. When he does break onto Montreal’s lineup, you should expect him to fit in well after already having experience playing professionally against men in the Czech Republic.
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Starting out as an Ottawa Senators contributor for The Hockey Writers, Josh is now an editor and at-large contributor, focusing on prospects, the NHL Draft, hockey history, and breaking news stories.