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#44 Dennis Cholowski
Pos: D
D.O.B.: 2/15/98
From: Langley, BC
Height: 6'1
Weight: 200
Shoots: Left
Drafted: 2016 draft 1st rnd, 20th overall by Detroit (NHL)
Acquired: Signed 3 yr contract with Detroit (NHL) 4/5/17
Plus: Dynamic, fluid skater... Patient - doesn't get rushed into making a bad play... Capable of jumping up into the play... Great vision and ability to find open players... Excellent gap control and defensive angles...
Minus: Needs to continue to get stronger and develop assertiveness...
Organizational Comments: Griffins Coach Ben Simon "He's a tremendously smart, intelligent hockey player and makes good decisions with the puck and can get up ice and contribute offensively. For Dennis, it's going to be the defensive side of things and closing quickly, using his size. If he can do that against bigger, stronger opponents at the pro level as opposed to juniors then he's going to start to see a little bit quicker progression."
What GRC says: 2019-20 The mobile rearguard is back in the AHL after spending the beginning of the season in Detroit for the second straight year. You can see that the tools are there, starting with his smooth skating and ability to thread passes through defenders and up ice. The problem is his confidence is shot, and he has regressed considerably from the last time he was in the AHL. His poor decision making, and defensive miscues are glaring and costly, and you can watch him overthinking plays which slows down his game. The organization is reaching a crossroad with Cholowski and may be best served by bring in a former NHL defender (Chelios, Kronwall, or Rafalski?) to work with him for the rest of the year in the hopes of getting him on track again.
2018-19 After starting the season in the NHL and sticking for the first half of the season, the second half was a disappointing one for the former first round draft pick. In the AHL his first game appeared to be his best, and he went downhill from there, becoming less and less assertive as time went on. He became less inclined to use his big point shot, and when leading the breakout, he displayed a habit of passing behind him when he reached the line instead of carrying in. Confidence was clearly the issue, and how the young defender regroups over the offseason will go a long way towards determining his future. He is penciled in to battle for an NHL job in training camp, but it would not be surprising if he began the year in the AHL.
Summer 2018 A big, fast skating offensive rearguard, Cholowski has been compared favorably with his idol, Scott Niedermayer, in terms of style. His game starts with his world class skating, agile and elusive in all four directions. He put up nearly a point per game last season in the WHL, showing off his offensive upside. Provided he doesn't make the parent Red WIngs out of camp, 'Cholo' should see a lot of ice time in all situations as he rounds into NHL form.

Role: Offensive Defenseman
Projection: 3-4 NHL Defender


4/5/17 Signed 3 yr contract with Detroit (NHL)
4/7/17 Signed to ATO by Grand Rapids (AHL)
5/28/17 Released from ATO
4/18/18 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
2/14/19 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
12/11/19 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
1/21/20 Recalled by Detroit (NHL)
1/22/20 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
1/30/20 Recalled by Detroit (NHL)
2/8/20 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
2/26/20 Recalled by Detroit (NHL)
3/3/20 Assigned by Detroit (NHL)
1/12/21 Assigned to Taxi Squad
2/1/21 Assigned to Grand Rapids (AHL)