DETROIT - The Detroit Red Wings today released their 2017 NHL Prospect Tournament roster, a group of 26 recent draft picks, free agent signees and tryouts who will compete against seven other NHL prospect teams for the Matthew Wuest Memorial Cup from Friday, Sept. 8 to Tuesday, Sept. 12 at Centre Ice Arena in Traverse City, Mich.
Highlighting Detroit's roster are the team's three most recent first-round picks: center Michael Rasmussen (ninth overall, 2017), a 6-foot-6 forward who scored 32 goals in 50 games for the Tri-City Americans of the Western Hockey League; defenseman Dennis Cholowski (20th overall, 2016), who turned professional following his freshman campaign at St. Cloud State University and served as a Black Ace during the Grand Rapids Griffins' Calder Cup championship run; and right wing Evgeny Svechnikov (19th overall, 2015), who won a Calder Cup as a rookie with Griffins after a 51-point regular season, capped off with a two-game NHL debut with the Red Wings in April.
Svechnikov is joined by fellow Calder Cup champions and second-year pro forwards Dominic Turgeon and Dylan Sadowy, as well as two other prospects who contributed to the Griffins' championship run after joining the team on late-season tryouts. Center Axel Holmstrom was the Swedish Junior Hockey Player of the Year in 2015 and has registered 45 points (19-26-46) in 112 regular-season Swedish Hockey League games in addition to 31 points (12-19-31) in 34 postseason games with Skelleftea, and defenseman Filip Hronek racked up 61 points (14-47-61) in 59 games for the Saginaw Spirit in the Ontario Hockey League and went on to play in 12 regular-season and playoff games for the Griffins at the conclusion of his OHL season.
Other roster highlights include a pair of 2016 draft picks in left wing Givani Smith, a second-rounder who was one of three Red Wings prospects (along with Cholowski and Rasmussen) who represented Canada earlier this month at the World Junior Summer Showcase at USA Hockey Arena in Plymouth, Mich., and defenseman Jordan Sambrook, a fifth-round pick who captured an OHL championship with the Erie Otters after a 15-goal, 40-point regular season. Defenseman Vili Saarijarvi, a 2015 third-round pick who missed last year's NHL Prospect Tournament due to injury after participating the year prior, is slated to return to tournament action after posting 31 points (11-20-31) in 34 games for the OHL's Mississauga Steelheads in 2016-17.
Rasmussen is one of six participants who were selected by the Red Wings at the 2017 NHL Entry Draft, along with right wing Lane Zablocki (79th overall), center Zach Gallant (83rd overall), defenseman Cole Fraser (131st overall), defenseman Reilly Webb (164th overall) and center Brady Gilmour (193rd overall). Other newcomers to the organization on the roster include a pair of European free agents: defenseman Libor Sulak, who represented the Czech Republic at the IIHF World Championship following two seasons in Austria's top professional league, where he was rookie of the year in 2015-16, and goaltender Matej Machovsky, who was annually among the statistical leaders while playing four seasons of professional hockey in the Czech Republic before he was signed by the Red Wings.
Twenty-six players who skated for the Red Wings during the 2016-17 campaign participated in the tournament during its 18-year history, while 552 total players have played in the tournament and moved on to skate in at least one NHL game. Prospects from the Carolina Hurricanes, Chicago Blackhawks, Columbus Blue Jackets, Dallas Stars, Minnesota Wild, New York Rangers and St. Louis Blues will also be competing in this year's tournament.
Tickets are available for $10 per day and can be purchased at Centre Ice Arena or at www.centreice.org. Each ticket is good for all four games per day. Teams are divided into two divisions and will play each team within their division once during the round robin before a crossover on the final day of the tournament, with the first-place finishers in each division meeting for the championship on Tuesday, Sept. 12. For more information and a complete tournament schedule, visit www.centreice.org.
Click here to view roster