Prospect Check Up: Mark Pysyk

By caitlincampbell

In the hockey world today it is getting harder and harder to find a player that will stay loyal to his team, many go where the money is, where they can be seen or where they have the best chance to succeed. Meet Mark Pysyk the Buffalo Sabres first round draft pick in the 2010 Entry draft, currently playing for the Edmonton Oil Kings in the WHL.

If we were all to be truthful very few of us would admit to actually watching a lot of WHL games, unless you live in Edmonton you don’t really care, you’re more interested in seeing the top guns from the OHL. Pysyk was drafted by the Oil Kings in 2007 and was their first ever draft pick, he was immediately dubbed the “Franchise player” and to his credit he didn’t bail on the Oil Kings. Even after getting drafted in the first round (23rd) overall by the Sabres in 2010, he didn’t bail on his team, he didn’t try and swing over to the OHL he returned and was named captain of the team.  All his hard work and dedication paid off this year as Pysyk and the Oil Kings won the WHL championship and are on their way to the Memorial Cup against the best team in the OHL and QMJL. Could a call up to Rochester next season be in his future?

Immediately getting drafted by the Sabres in 2010 he was returned to Oil Kings after a decent training camp, he now knew what he needed to do to reach the next level in his career. Get bigger and get more physical. In 2010-2011 Pysyk led all WHL defenseman with 6 goals and 34 assists after his 3rd full season in

Picture property of Calgary Herald

the WHL and signed a 3 year entry level deal with the Sabres. He followed suite again this year, finishing with 6 goals and 32 assists in 57 games, not to mention his whopping 83 penalty minutes and was apart of the 2012 World Junior Champions Canadian team! In the 2012 playoffs he added 3 goals (including a game winner) and 11 assists to go with 16 penalty minutes in 20 games. Something tells me he’s taken care of the physical aspect of his game!

Pysyk plays a solid 2-way game which goes hand in hand with his fluid, smooth skating ability. With his recently amped up physical play and his 6 foot 2 frame he would make a solid addition to the struggling Sabres blue-line. If he wins the Memorial Cup, he could find himself starting the year up in Buffalo and if no he will likely be starting the year in Rochester.

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