Place of BirthPlzen, CZE
Jiricek is a smooth-skating defender who shows great awareness on both sides of the puck and has the confidence and skill with the puck to run a power play as well as get quick, accurate shots on target. Jiricek has great balance and power in his strides, showing the speed to carry the puck in transition. While his foot speed is average now, he shows good mobility in all directions and proves very tough to get past thanks to his feet. He shows some creativity and poise with the puck, particularly on the power play, moving around in the offensive end and opening up lanes to the net by using feints. He can carry the puck out of his own end around forechecking pressure as well as through the neutral zone to enter the offensive zone. Jiricek also shows patience at the point, moving along the line to find passing lanes. Jiricek isn’t as physically imposing as his older brother David, a top 2022 pick, but he controls gaps very well and uses his long reach to force rush plays to the outside of the defensive zone, consistently finishing his hits along the wall and in the corners. He contains the middle of the ice well with his frame, actively pressuring higher up in the defensive zone to create turnovers. While his offensive instincts and puckhandling abilities are very impressive, his aggressiveness with the puck and slight frame could hold him back in the Extraliga this season. If he excels there, he could be in consideration for a high first-round pick in 2024.