2008-09: Adam Payerl skated in all 68 games for the OHL’s Barrie Colts in his second season after seeing limited ice time in 47 games in 2007-08. He scored 7 goals with 10 assists and was minus-16 with 59 penalty minutes. The Colts made the OHL playoffs; finishing third in the Central Division. Payerl was minus-three with 1 assist and 8 penalty minutes in the five game series against Mississauga St. Michael’s. Payerl was ranked 191st amongst North American skaters in Central Scouting’s rankings prior to the 2009 NHL Draft but was not drafted.
2009-10: Obtained by Belleville in a trade with Barrie just prior to the start of the OHL season, Payerl was the second-leading scorer among Bulls forward for a team that struggled to score goals and finished with the league’s second-worst record. Playing in 67 of 68 games, he had 17 goals with 26 assists and was minus-23 with 39 penalty minutes. Seven of his goals were scored on the Bulls’ power play.
2010-11: Payerl added an enforcer role and physical play to his game in his second season with Belleville. Skating in 63 games for the Bulls, he scored 10 goals with 19 assists and was third on the team with 79 penalty minutes; finishing the year minus-18. Belleville made the playoffs despite finishing with the OHL’s third-worst record; finishing three points ahead of Peterborough in the East Division. Payerl was minus-three with no points nor penalty minutes in the four-game series with Mississauga St. Michael’s.
2011-12: Payerl earned an invitation to Columbus Blue Jackets’ main camp after skating for the Blue Jackets’ squad in the Traverse City Prospects Tournament. Following camp he returned to Belleville for an overage OHL season. He made his pro debut at the end of the season after signing a three-year entry-level contract with Pittsburgh, appearing in two games with the Penguins’ AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He had 1 assist with 2 penalty minutes in his brief AHL stint. Payerl was the third-leading scorer for Belleville while leading the Bulls in penalty minutes (106). He scored 22 goals with 25 assists and was plus-two in 61 games. In Belleville’s six-game playoff series with the Ottawa 67’s he scored 1 goal with 2 assists and was minus-three with 9 penalty minutes.
2012-13: Payerl appeared in 44 regular season games and all 15 playoff contests for Pittsburgh’s AHL affiliate in Wilkes-Barre/Scranton in his first pro season. He scored 3 goal with 7 assists and had an even plus minus with 53 penalty minutes as the Penguins finished third in the AHL’s East Division. The Penguins reached the Eastern Conference finals and Payerl scored 2 goals with 1 assist and was -1 with 13 penalty minutes in the playoffs. He also played four games for Wheeling in the ECHL; scoring 1 goal and finishing +1 with 15 penalty minutes.
2013-14: Payerl made his NHL debut in two April games with Pittsburgh after spending the season with the Penguins’ AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He had no points and was minus-1 with 2 penalty minutes; averaging nine minutes of ice time with Pittsburgh. Payerl missed over two months after suffering an upper-body injury in November; scoring 5 goals with 6 assists in 43 AHL regular season games and finishing with an even plus/minus and 39 penalty minutes. The Penguins finished second in the East Division and reached the AHL Eastern Conference finals. In 13 AHL playoff games Payerl scored 1 goal with 1 assist and was +1 with 10 penalty minutes.
Payerl is a big forward who is known for his willingness to hit, and hit often. He possesses a long reach and strong frame which he can use to effectively protect the puck along the boards and in the corners. He is at his best playing hard on the forecheck, creating energy, and filling a defensive role.
Payerl was expected to challenge for a lower line spot with Pittsburgh during training camp but struggled and was one of the first players assigned to AHL affiliate Wilkes-Barre/Scranton at the start of the 2014-15 season. His difficulties continued into the season and he was a healthy scratch at times — appearing in 22 games. His play appeared to be picking up in December when he suffered what may be a season-ending "lower body" injury. Given his limited offensive abilities, Payerl seems destined for a fourth-line role at the NHL level. Consistency will be the key to him taking that next step.