Dylan Larkin Proving He is Ready


The Detroit Red Wings have had success with finding underrated players in the NHL Draft before and they have another “steal” in Dylan Larkin. Larkin was selected in the 1st round of the 2014 NHL Draft, but what makes him a possible “steal” is that he is being hyped and is playing as a top 5 pick.

Larkin started out at the United States Hockey League playing for the USNTDP Juniors team. He put up a pleasant amount of points, scoring 56 in 60 games. It wasn’t until his freshman year at The University of Michigan, however, that he would start receiving the hype of a top 5 selection in the draft.

Larkin shined at the college level by showcasing his power forward style of game, with an offensive sprinkle to add to it. The pace of play of the college game fit perfectly with Larkin and his type of game and Larkin soon became a fan favorite among Michigan Wolverine fans.

Larkin started to gain a national following when he was playing with Team USA at the 2015 World Junior Championships. Larkin was looked at as Team USA’s best player at the tournament after an astounding performance in Montreal and Toronto. Larkin scored 5 goals in 5 games and added 2 assists as well.

After the World Juniors, Larkin returned to Michigan and resumed turning heads and his consistent production that carried over from the World Juniors helped him grow his potential and become the best Detroit Red Wings prospect. Larkin finished the year with 15 goals and 32 assists for The University of Michigan.

As a freshman, it is hard to believe that Larkin is ready for the AHL but the Red Wings made the commitment to have him on the Griffins by signing him to an entry level contract on Thursday. Larkin would be leaving college for, hopefully, the NHL. Before his first NHL season, Larkin is helping the Grand Rapids Griffins during their Calder Cup playoff run.

That started very well on Monday when Larkin played in his first professional level game. Larkin scored 2 goals within 4 minutes apart in the Griffins 4-2 win over the Utica Comets. Larkin was all over the ice and was quick to use his body. If it was any indication of how Larkin will play in the NHL, Red Wings fans should be more than happy with the game he put together on Monday.

What is being overlooked at is Larkin’s time at the World Championships. Even though the Waterford native accumulated one point in the 10 games that he played, Larkin’s physical performance, as well as his chemistry with a potential superstar like Jack Eichel, under assistant coaches Dan Bylsma and Todd Richards played a big role in the organization’s decision to offer Larkin the opportunity to play in the AHL this year. Helene St. James of the Detroit Free Press reported that Detroit GM Ken Holland talked to the two coaches before Larkin signed the 3-year deal.

Larkin is exceeding expectations in Detroit, but soon those expectations will be raised to fit an NHL player. Larkin’ play with the Griffins will go a long way with how developed he is for the NHL.