Dylan Holloway starred in the AJHL for the Okotoks Oilers. In his last season where he had 40 goals and 88 points in 53 games. After that, he was off to the University of Wisconsin.
Don’t get caught up in his offensive numbers (17 pts in 35 GP) or lack thereof. He played as a true freshman, and teams still know what he’s capable that could start to emerge this coming season. He was the second-youngest player in NCAA hockey last year. He gets to pucks first, has good speed, he ended up at 49% of face-offs going over 60% in the second half of the season.
“My physicality throughout the year increased. I play better when I play more physical,” he opined. “At the start of the year, I was getting used to the place and playing against much bigger guys. Towards the end of the year, I was getting more confident with my size and skating. I was throwing the body around a little more, and that helped me get on the scoresheet.”
Here’s where I ranked him http://www.sportsology.com/2020-nhl-draft-my-top-31-version-6-0-final-rankings/
This center will go in the first round and Holloway talked about how he sees his draft night experience will unfold.
“My mom, my dad, and my brother are coming down from Canada. I have some family in Michigan, and they’re coming over. They have an Airbnb they’re renting and hopefully have a draft party there with all my teammates as well.”
All potential first-rounders are getting a box from the NHL and Holloway is expecting his.
“I heard I’m getting that though. I’m pretty sure I’ll be getting a hat from all 31 teams, and when I get drafted, I’ll wear it,” said an excited Holloway.
Draft day will mark a special day in his life.
“I’ve thought about it a little bit. It’s a big goal of mine since I was a little kid,” said Holloway. “So now that’s is come out it’s pretty special. I’m happy I get to stay with my family. They sacrificed a lot to help me get into the position I am today. I’m just happy I’ll be able to spend the moment with them.”
Teams have been calling. Who wouldn’t want a two-way center with toughness?
“I did a lot of zoom calls and did them with pretty much every single team,” he revealed. “I got really busy in June because they thought the draft was going to be at the scheduled time. It got pretty busy there with no combine. After the draft got announced in October, it’s kind of died down again. Then I started talking to teams again. It’s still fun and pretty special talking to NHL teams.”
Holloway is a second-generation player and teams like that. His father, Bruce played a few games for the Canucks during the 1984-85 season. He was a defenseman.
“My dad, he has a hockey background. He played a few NHL games for Vancouver,” Holloway noted. “He’s been a big part of my development throughout the years. Always giving me little tips.”
Holloway also took part in Hockey Canada’s virtual camp for the 2021 World Junior Championship.
“It was like an all-day zoom call. We talked about a bunch of stuff like team values. There were some special guests and some seminars,” he said. “We did some team building as well.”
Prospects took advantage of this long pause to get bigger, stronger, and faster, so your previous takes on a player may have already changed, but it’s hard to notice when few are playing.
“This summer was a big offseason, so I was able to train quite a bit. After a couple of practices, I’m feeling good and confident. Holloway stated. “I think gaining a couple of pounds and extra muscle will help me throughout the year.”
Some compared him to Dylan Larkin, but don’t think that’s right. Now that he’s 6-1, 203 pounds, his comparison might be closer.
“Another player I model my game after is Gabriel Landeskog.”
Don’t sleep on Holloway. He should go somewhere from 15 on. The first round will be harder to predict after the Top 10. There will be some surprises.
Check out my new hockey book Sticks and Stones here.