Jack Adams didn't realize he was Red Wings' pick
Traverse City — Jack Adams didn’t have that immediate sense of excitement when he was selected by the Red Wings two weeks ago at the NHL Draft.
After all, he heard John Adams was selected in the sixth round, 162nd overall.
And there’s the rub.
Yes, it’s John Adams in all the legal documents, passport, drivers license.
“Everything says John but no one calls me that,” said Adams, who is one of the players at the Red Wings’ development camp in Traverse City.
It’s Jack, the nickname he’s had forever, that everyone calls him.
So, when Adams heard the Red Wings had picked John Adams, it didn’t register.
“My adviser called me and asked whether I was happy,” Adams said. “He said, ‘You just got picked by the Red Wings.’
“Then everyone was texting me whether that was me and I said yes, and it kind of exploded on social media. A lot of people were joking.”
In the Adams’ family, everyone has a nickname.
“My mom always called me Jack, so I’ll stick with that,” Adams said. “No one, literally no one, calls me John besides the Red Wings, I guess.”
Then, there’s the whole name association thing going with legendary Red Wings coach and general manager.
And, well, Adams is the same name as former President John Adams.
“I’ve been learning a lot more,” said Adams, of the former Red Wings executive. “I knew he was a big guy and it being Detroit, it was pretty ironic. I have a long way to go before I become anyone like that.
“All the fans have been tweeting at me and some articles came out saying the Red Wings can’t get any older, and now they’ve drafted a 281-year old president.
“It’s been pretty crazy.”
One player a few years older than most at this development camp is defenseman Libor Sulak.
At 23, Sulak is an undrafted free agent signed from the Czech Republic this spring to a two-year, entry-level contract.
Sulak (6-foot-2, 207-pounds) impressed at the world championships, after posting 28 points (10 goals) in 54 games playing in the Austrian League during the regular season.
General manager Ken Holland feels Sulak could be a late bloomer who eventually finds his way into the NHL.
Sulak is further along offensively than defensively and has a strong shot and is a fine skater.
Sulak was excited when Holland and scout/player evaluator Jiri Fischer met with him after the world championships in May.
“They offered me a contract and said this is the start of my career with the Red Wings,” Sulak said. “I was very happy.”
Sulak will play in the Finland this season and plans to play in North America for the 2018-19 season.
The lone scrimmage of the five-day camp will be Sunday morning with the roster split into Team Zetterberg and Team Kronwall.
Shawn Horcoff, director of player development, is eager to see how players respond in a game setting.
“When you see them in a competitive environment like that, it’ll be fun,” Horcoff said.
Horcoff has been impressed with the pace and work ethic of the first two days of drills.