One of the top prospects from the 2017 draft class has returned to the ice and is looking to put the lessons he learned during his first professional season to good. Also, a young goaltender is looking to take the next step in his career and we profile an intriguing talent out of the NCAA.
Frost Back on the Ice
There is little doubt that Morgan Frost is the top offensive prospect in the Philadelphia Flyers organization. After being selected in the first round (27th overall) of the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, Frost dominated the Ontario Hockey League (OHL). He scored 79 goals and 221 points in 125 games for the Soo Greyhounds during the 2017-18 and 2018-19 seasons combined.
The 2019-20 hockey season marked Frost’s first as a professional and he started it with the Lehigh Valley Phantoms in the American Hockey League (AHL). He scored his first professional goal against the Springfield Falcons on Oct. 19, 2019. Through his first 16 games, he had five goals and 12 points before getting the call to head to Philadelphia.
Frost made his NHL debut for the Flyers on Nov. 19, 2019, at the Florida Panthers, and scored a goal against Sergei Bobrovsky.
He scored another goal two nights later versus the Carolina Hurricanes. He spent 18 more games in the NHL this past season and wasn’t able to find the back of the net.
“You know, it’s a lot of little things, but I think generally, it’s learning to be a pro, just being around older guys,” Frost said about his first taste of life in the NHL. “You see how seriously they take their bodies and, and their training. I just tried to learn as much as I could and, and soak it up as much as I could. So you know, hopefully, I can get to that level one day.”
Back with the Phantoms, Frost was named an AHL All-Star and finished his rookie season with 13 goals and 29 points. He was just one point behind Greg Carey for the team lead in scoring despite playing in 16 fewer AHL games than him.
Frost has been skating at the Flyers training center in Voorhees, NJ over the past couple of weeks. He is getting ready in case he is called upon to suit up during the Stanley Cup playoffs, which are hoping to begin next month. He is optimistic he can take all the lessons he’s learned this season and turn them into production on the ice.
“I think I’ve learned a lot since camp,” he admitted. “There’s definitely adjustments. Putting myself in position to get more puck touches, make more plays. It’s more off-puck, competing every shift. Making sure I move my feet. Being engaged on the plays with the puck, too. Things happen faster [in the pros]. On faceoff, it’s getting lower and not relying mostly on winning draws with my hands.”
Bednar Looking to Impress in North America
The Acadie-Bathurst Titan used the second overall pick of the recent Canadian Hockey League’s (CHL) Import Draft to goaltender Jan Bednar. The Czech Republic native will bring a huge presence to the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL) with his 6-foot-4 frame, if and when he reports.
“I’m very happy to be part of this great organization. It’s a great league with many fantastic players and it’s a good opportunity for me too,” Bednar said about being picked by the Titan. “It’s a good step for my way to the NHL … small rink, more shots, and many hard situations for goalies.”
The CHL Import Draft may not be the only draft Bednar gets selected in this year. He is ranked second among all European goaltenders, by NHL Central Scouting, for the upcoming NHL 2020 Entry. Being drafted by an NHL club could speed up the process of Bednar making the move to North America.
Bednar split the 2019-20 season between the top two junior leagues in the Czech Republic. He appeared in a combined 37 games, posting a .879 save percentage and a 3.82 goals-against average.
Prospect of the Day: Dylan Holloway
Holloway is coming off a rather disappointing freshman season at the University of Wisconsin. After a huge 2018-19 season in the Alberta Junior Hockey League (AJHL), he only scored eight goals and 17 points in 35 games for the Badgers. There were higher expectations for Holloway because he was playing on a loaded roster than included 2019 NHL first-round draft picks Cole Caufield and Alex Turcotte.
Despite the low point production, scouts are still high on his skill set and overall potential. He is ranked 12th among North American skaters, by NHL Central Scouting, heading into the draft.
Holloway plays a physical brand of hockey with a high-energy still of offensive. He may never be a big-time goal-scorer, but his vision and ability to set up his teammates are what have him ranked so highly among scouts. He does not back down from a challenge and is always looking to get involved in a battle for the puck.
Related: 2020 NHL Draft Guide
Our own Peter Baracchini feels that Holloway has the talent to be a first-round pick at this year’s draft.
A for sure first round-talent, Holloway will hear his name anywhere from 11th to 15th. A draft that is extremely deep with forward talent, Holloway could slip because of the names ahead of him. His speed and ability to battle for the puck will bode well with many teams, but his offensive production could be another reason why he could fall out of the top.
Holloway still has a lot of work do to, but the foundation of good speed, a great stick and a two-way game could make him worth the investment. He is playing for one of the top college programs in the United States, so he is in the right place to make the progressions needed to become a pro down the road.
Greg Boysen has been writing about the Chicago Blackhawks since 2010 and has been a site manager for both FanSided and SB Nation. He has been published in The Hockey News and was fully credentialed for the 2013 Stanley Cup Final. Among his various roles with The Hockey Writers are covering the Blackhawks, the AHL, writing the daily “Today in Hockey History” column, serving as a copy editor, and appearing and hosting multiple YouTube shows, including Blackhawks Banter. He is credentialed with the Chicago Wolves, Rockford IceHogs, and Milwaukee Admirals, while also being a regional scout for the NAHL. And, just because his plate isn’t full enough, Greg hosts trivia in the Chicago area two nights a week. For interview requests or to provide topic suggestions, follow Greg on Twitter and reach out.