Thick hockey bloodlines flow through Adam Musil’s blood vessels. The Red Deer Rebels sophomore is not only the son of former NHL defender Frank Musil and brother of Edmonton Oilers prospect David Musil, but he’s also the nephew of former NHL centre Bobby Holik.
Musil decided to buck the immediate-family trend by not becoming a defenceman like his father and brother. Instead, he chose to play down the middle partially because he looked up to his uncle while he was a prominent power-forward in the NHL.
“Growing up I wanted to follow the footsteps of my uncle,” says Musil, whom NHL Central Scouting Service peg as an A-list prospect. “He’s someone I look up to and I like how he played the game.”
Musil shares more with Holik than just bloodlines and a position, though. Since maturing into a 6-foot-3, 208-pound frame, developing an edge to his game and a long, powerful skating stride, he’s drawn some comparisons as a similar style of player as his uncle.
“I want to play that type of style (that Holik played),” he says. “I try to be physical and play hard like he did.”
Musil has received quality tips from his uncle, but he ultimately gets all the advice he needs from his father because he has the insightful perspective of a former player and a current NHL scout (Oilers).
“It’s a benefit (of having a father as a scout),” says Musil. “He tells me what scouts are looking for and what I need to improve on and do different. He’s been through it all, so he knows what it takes to get there (to the NHL).”
In addition to playing a different position than his father and brother, Musil represents a different country at international tournaments. The Delta, B.C., native made the decision to represent Canada at the U17 World Hockey Challenge last year when he had the option of suiting up for the Czech Republic because he has dual citizenship. His family left the decision up to him and he simply felt it was a “no-brainer.”
“It was a no-brainer because it’s Canada,” he says. “They play for gold every year and I grew up here… My family let the decision up to me and totally understood when I made it.”
Musil has noticeably taken a step forward in his game this year by developing into a premier top-6 forward. It shows in his stats as he has netted eight goals and 22 points in 26 games following scoring 29 points in 60 contests last year. But with a modest and humble attitude, the 17-year-old gives full credit to his teammates for his production.
“I think (I’m playing better because) our team is better than last year,” says Musil. “We have four lines playing well and that wears down other teams because we play hard and play well together as a team.”
1. Do you have a favourite NHL player?
“(I) have to go with (New Jersey Devils forward) Jaromir Jagr. He’s from the Czech Republic and it’s inspiring to see him still playing (at 42-years-old).”
2. Do you have a favourite NHL team?
“I like Edmonton because my dad works for them and my brother was drafted by them.”
3. What arena do you like playing in on the road?
“All those American teams are fun to play against. Seattle (at the ShoWare Center) has a good crowd to play against. I also like playing at Rexall Centre in Edmonton.”
4. What type of music do you like to listen to before a game?
“I’m not really a big music guy before a game, but I’d have to go with country.”
5. If you weren’t entrenched in hockey, what other sport would you pursue?
“It would have to be tennis – definitely 100 per cent tennis. My mom (Andrea Holikova) was a professional tennis player and got me into tennis. I played until I was 13-years-old and decided to quit to play hockey. It was a tough decision for me to make.”
Kelly Friesen is a Buzzing the Net columnist for Yahoo! Sports. Follow him on Twitter @KellyFriesen