Edmonton Oilers’ forward Dylan Holloway is having an impressive preseason. In five games, he’s recorded four goals and two assists, including scoring a hat trick against the Vancouver Canucks on Oct. 3. Not only is he on the verge of making the team on opening night, but with his speed, size and tenacity, he could be an impact player for Edmonton this season. With that in mind, here are five fun facts to get acquainted with the Oilers’ forward.
Holloway Previously Played for Another Oilers Team
Holloway was drafted by the Oilers, 14th overall in the 2020 NHL Draft. He played his first NHL game in the Western Conference Final against the Colorado Avalanche last spring, but that wasn’t the first time he suited up for a team called the Oilers. After playing midget AAA, he ironically signed with and played for the Okotoks Oilers in the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL).
He played in 83 games with Okotoks in a span of three seasons and tallied 51 goals and 63 assists. After the 2018-19 season, he was named the AJHL MVP and recipient of the Alberta Old Time Hockey Players Trophy. The Okotoks Oiler scored six game-winning goals, recorded 88 points, and finished second in the scoring race. In the process, he temporarily set a single-season franchise scoring record for the (Okotoks) Oilers. In addition, he was named the co-winner of the AJHL’s Viterra Cup for earning “Star of the Game” honours 13 times throughout the 2018-19 season.
Holloway Was Drafted to the WHL but Never Played
Holloway was originally drafted by the Everett Silvertips 121st overall in the sixth round of the 2016 Bantam Western Hockey League (WHL) Draft. However, the Bragg Creek, AB native was only 15 years old during the 2016-17 season and was not eligible to immediately play with the team.
Holloway participated in Silvertips training camp and eventually received an offer to sign his junior contract. However, he declined and returned to play in the Alberta Midget AAA Hockey League (AMHL). During the season, Holloway made a verbal commitment to join the Wisconsin Badgers of the NCAA, making him ineligible to play in the WHL. At the time, he said:
“I went to Everett’s camp and they wanted me to sign, but my dad told me to keep my options open and that I could always sign with (the Silvertips later). I appreciate everything Everett did for me, but right now a better fit for me would be the NCAA route.”– Dylan Holloway
Despite not playing a single WHL game, on June 14, 2019, the Silvertips traded Holloway’s playing rights to the Winnipeg ICE for a 2021 fifth-round draft pick, a conditional 2021 first-round draft pick, and a conditional 2022 second-round draft pick.
Holloway Is a Second Generation NHL Player
Dylan isn’t the first Holloway to play in the NHL. His father, Bruce Holloway, was drafted 136th overall by the Vancouver Canucks in 1981 but suited up in only two NHL games. Yet, before starting his professional hockey career, he played four seasons in the WHL from 1978-83. He played for four different teams totalling 254 games and recorded 152 points as a defenseman.
The elder Holloway may have only played a couple of NHL games, but he played 110 games in the American Hockey League (AHL) and 67 games in the now-disbanded International Hockey League (IHL). He suffered a serious injury that sent him back home to interior British Columbia, and eventually to Bragg Creek, AB, where he started a helicopter business.
Holloway Has Represented Team Canada on Many Occasions
Holloway has suited up for his country on numerous occasions. As a 16-year-old, he joined Team Canada Red at the World U-17 challenge and was the only AJHL player to represent the red and white. He scored a goal in the tournament en route to a second-place finish.
Holloway was selected to represent his country again in 2018 at the U18 Hlinka Gretzky Cup, capturing gold and scoring a goal and two assists in five games. He was also a member of Canada West at the World Junior A Hockey Challenge the same year. Additionally, he played for Team Canada at the 2019 IIHF U18 World Championship. The team finished in fourth place, and the forward tallied two goals and four points in seven tournament games.
Holloway was also selected to be a part of the 2021 World Junior Championship (WJC) Team Canada squad, which allowed him to play in his future NHL home arena at Rogers Place in Edmonton. Team Canada dominated early in the tournament but fell to the Americans in the gold medal game. He suffered an upper-body injury that kept him out of one game but scored a goal and an assist in the tournament to help his team capture a silver medal.
Holloway Has Been Nominated For or Won an Award at Every Level
As previously mentioned, Holloway took home the honours of AJHL MVP in 2018-19 and was also named the co-winner of the AJHL’s Viterra Cup. However, he won another award that season as well. In combination with the games he played with Team Canada that season, he played 92 games total, which led him to be named the Canadian Junior Hockey League Player of the Year.
At the time, he spoke of the accomplishment, saying, “It is a huge honour, and there is a ton of players in all the leagues across the country who could have got that too, but it is a blessing being named player of the year.” With his achievement, Holloway joined an impressive list of former winners that includes Paul Kariya, Dany Heatley, Kyle Turris, Tyson Jost, and Cale Makar, among others.
Thereafter, Holloway played in the NCAA with the Wisconsin Badgers for two seasons from 2019-2021. In his final season, he tallied 11 goals and 24 assists in 23 games. For his efforts, he was nominated for the Hobey Baker Award given to the most outstanding player of the year. Unfortunately, Holloway lost out to his then-Badgers teammate, Cole Caufield, who led the country in scoring with 30 goals and 22 assists in 31 games. On a team level, the Badgers advanced to the Big 10 championship game and made the NCAA Tournament for the first time since 2014.
Holloway has either won awards or been nominated for them at every level he’s played, and if his preseason success with the Oilers transitions into the regular season in the NHL, he could be in consideration for another award – the Calder Trophy – to add to his already impressive hockey résumé.
He’s the first ever Ultimate MVP fan of the NHL as declared by Upperdeck – He’s been featured on CBC Radio providing hockey analysis for the Edmonton Oilers – He’s a freelance writer and Edmonton Oilers’ Sportswriter for the Hockey Writers.