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SOURCE: Big-Bodied Devils Prospect Center Left Unsigned, Becomes Free-Agent

Jaromir Pytlik was drafted by the Devils in the fourth round of the 2020 NHL Draft, 99th overall.

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New Jersey Devils
Credit: Rytíři Kladno

New Jersey Devils prospect, Jaromir Pytlik, will not be signed by the team, a team source tells New Jersey Hockey Now

The Devils decided by Saturday’s 5 P.M. deadline not to sign the big-bodied Czech center, therefore, Pytlik is now a free agent.

In the 2020 NHL Draft, the Devils selected Pytlik in the fourth round, 99th overall.

Coming into his draft year, the 6-foot-2, 200 lb center scored 22 goals and 50 points playing in the Ontario Hockey League for the Soo Ste. Marie Greyhounds.

In his draft year, Pytlik was known as an all-around, 200-foot center whose most notable skills are his skating, puck control, and finish. His speed and physicality paired with his size make him a tough candidate to defend in one-on-one situations who can outmuscle defenders.

Since the former Devils prospect was taken by New Jersey in 2020, Pytlik opted to continue his development overseas. As opposed to playing against OHL-sized opposition pre-draft, Pytlik played in Liiga, Mestis, and this past season, Czechia against professional-sized opposition.

As a result, Pytlik’s development hasn’t been quite as linear, although, his best season since he was drafted was in 2023-24 with Jaromir Jagr‘s club, Rytíři Kladno, scoring seven goals and 13 points in 43 games.

EliteProspects last update on the Czech forward was less than encouraging, therefore, leaving Pytlik unsigned doesn’t come as much of a surprise.

“Despite being a former fourth-round pick with high expectations, Jaromír Pytlík has struggled to live up to even his modest draft billing. He’s only got one point in his last 11 Extraliga contests, an assist, and is stuck at 11 points total through 35 contests. He’s always been known as more of an all-around player, but if you can’t be a difference-maker in the Extraliga, then you don’t have a hope of making the NHL.”

Pytlik was a standout last summer, however, couldn’t overcome struggles at the professional level and the now-former Devils prospect is free to sign with any other NHL club, should he receive an offer.

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