Ulicny On NHL, NCAA Radar
Johnny Ulicny has come a long way. And he’s gone a long way to reach his goals.
From 2016-2017 wearing a Chatham-Kent Cyclones jersey in his U15 season, to hearing his name called by the Windsor Spitfires late in the 2018 OHL Draft while playing for Sun County; on to Junior B with the Leamington Flyers; next to the OJHL with the Markham Royals, and finally across the border to play for the Islanders Hockey Club this season while the pandemic put a hold on hockey in Ontario.
Ulicny has been chasing his hockey goals, and recently achieved one of them seeing his name appear on the NHL Central Scouting list.
“I was very pleased to see my name on the NHL Central Scouting List. It was a goal of mine and I knew in order to try and achieve it I couldn’t afford to sit out the season,” said Ulicny.
Ulicny first made his way onto the radar of NHL scouts with a strong performance at last year’s OJHL Top Prospects game. But with hockey on hold in many leagues, scouts have had more time to watch leagues like the NCDC, where Ulicny is currently playing, and his performance there has been spectacular.
“I think I have always approached every season with high hopes and I try not to take anything for granted. It certainly was something that I have been working toward achieving and I understood before the season and understand now that there are no guarantees,” Ulicny continued about becoming a “C” rated prospect by NHL Central Scouting.
“I realize I need to continue to improve, work hard and remain determined. There’s a lot of unfinished business.”
Ulicny’s unfinished business has kept him motivated, with the next target on his list to achieve being an NCAA scholarship to a Division I program.
“The Islanders Hockey Club has given me an opportunity to play and to showcase my game. The experience has been very positive. The coaching staff and players made me feel welcome from day one. The league has several D1 committed players and I have been able to measure my game against them and also learn from them on and off the ice. Personally, I want to continue to improve each and every game and help the team find its winning way.”
Ulicny continued to impress and earned a spot in the NCDC NHL Prospects and NCAA Uncommitted Players Game last week.
“Getting recognition is always nice, but I know that there is still lots of hard work to do to achieve my short and long term goals. Ultimately, I want to play NCAA Division I hockey. I believe I can play at that level and I am confident in my game. I realize I need to keep everything in perspective and continue to develop.”
If the five-foot-ten Tecumseh product keeps on his current path, the sky is the limit, and he can’t wait to take care of business, and continue advancing.
“I feel very fortunate that I have been given the opportunity to play this season. Things are moving in the right direction and there is still lots of unfinished business to take care of.”