Wisconsin sophomore forward Dylan Holloway was the 14th player selected in Tuesday night’s NHL Draft when he the Calgary-native was selected by his home province’s Edmonton Oilers.
Holloway was one of the youngest players in the NCAA last season when he joined the Badgers as a late-2001 birthdate for his NHL Draft year. He had moderate success at Wisconsin in a mostly lost season for the Badgers last year. Holloway finished eighth in team scoring with a 8-9-17 in 35 games.
I wrote a bit about my impressions on Holloway’s season when Central Scouting’s Mid-term rankings came out, and those feelings stayed mostly the same as the season progressed:
Wisconsin’s Dylan Holloway leads all players with NCAA ties on Central Scouting, checking in at 10th on the North American skaters list and 13th on Button’s list. Holloway is having a decent year at Wisconsin. I’ve loved his speed and ability to win loose pucks in the games I’ve seen Wisconsin play. He’s generating a lot of shots, and while I don’t have access to those types of numbers, I’d be willing to bet his advanced stats look pretty good too.
Only nine points in 18 games is a little concerning though. Wisconsin does have some big gunners that chew up a lot of the prime PP time, and Holloway is still fairly young, but you’d hope for a little more offensive flash if we’re talking about drafting him the top-15-ish range in the draft. The immediate comparison that comes to mind is Cameron Hughes who, like Holloway, came to Wisconsin out of Alberta as a late-year birthdate that just missed the draft age cut-off the year prior. Hughes was a great skater, and nice player, but never really developed into more than a fringe guy/One Game Wonder at the NHL level. Now, Hughes never had the scoring track record Holloway did. Hughes was just over 1.00 pts/gm in his final year of juniors, while Holloway was at 1.67, and Holloway’s .50 pts/gm in the NCAA was better than Hughes’ .33 as a freshman. Hughes was also always considered more of a fringe draft pick—Central Scouting had him in the low-100s, and he was picked in the 6th round—while Holloway has consistently been ranked in first round territory. So maybe the scoring develops and Holloway turns into a player worthy of that high pick. That ranking just feels a little high to me.