TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. – Patrick Holway knew there was a chance, but he couldn’t sit around and let last weekend’s NHL draft consume him.
“It wasn’t necessarily that I didn’t think I was going to get drafted, I knew it was a possibility,” the 18-year-old from Cohasset, Massachusetts said. “So, I just tried to keep my mind off it. If things worked out they were gonna work out.”
While 30 NHL clubs were busy on the draft floor at BB&T Center, the 6-foot-5 defenseman kept occupied by helping his dad’s friend move out of his house.
Then came word that the Red Wings selected him in the sixth round, the 170th overall pick.
“I found out when my agent ended up calling me,” he said. “It was a crazy feeling really.”
There were 24 alumni from the Tier 1 Elite Hockey League taken in this year’s NHL draft. But Holway was the only one who played in the premier U18 league last season, producing eight goals and 25 points in 28 games for the Boston Advantage.
Holway has graduated to the USHL, where he will play for the Dubuque Fighting Saints in the fall. He’s also committed to the University of Maine. He’ll join the Black Bears for the 2016-17 season.
Now, let’s get to know more about this 18-year-old draftee:
STATUS: Red Wings sixth-round pick in last month’s NHL draft. Defenseman will play the upcoming season for the Dubuque Fighting Saints (USHL) before heading to the University of Maine in 2016-17.
DOB: October 1, 1996, in Cohasset, Mass.
FIRST HOCKEY MEMORY: “Just going on the ice as a little mite, just trying to skate around; just trying to get it together. It wasn’t easy, but at that young age you’re not so coordinated.”
HOCKEY HEROES: “One of them had to be Nick Lidstrom, just because he’s a hall of famer, an unbelievable hockey player. I just try to model my game after him a little bit.”
LAST BOOK READ: “It was the ‘Book Thief’ (novel by Markus Zusak). I forget the author, but it was a pretty good book that we had as a school project. I just finished it this spring at Cohasset High School.”
CURRENT CAR: “It’s a black Chevy Tahoe, that’s a 2008.”
FIRST JOB: “Working for my hockey coach back home teaching all the little kids skills. That’s what I did for a job.”
GREATEST SPORTS MOMENT: “So far winning the lacrosse state championship. It was just an unbelievable feeling. Just winning the (2014) state championship with just the kids I grew up with was an awesome feeling. (Expected to win the title?) Yeah, we were definitely ranked up there, but it was good to actually fulfill what we were expected to do, meet our expectations. So, that was very good.”
MOST PAINFUL MOMENT: “Probably had to be losing the state championship this spring. We ended up a little short this year, but, I mean, we put it all out there and that’s all we could do. Things fell a little short for us, but it was a great season. (Who beat you in finals?) Dover-Sherborn, the same team that we beat to win the championship.”
FAVORITE UNIFORMS: “I like the Blackhawks a lot, honestly. I like their jerseys.”
FAVORITE ARENA: “Growing up in Boston this is hard to say, but it has to be the Bell Centre in Montreal. The rink is unbelievable.”
CLOSEST HOCKEY FRIENDS: “Probably my buddies back home. A few of them are in the USHL, Ben DiMaio, who plays for Omaha, and Stephen Cochrane goes out to Maine next year.”
FUNNIEST HOCKEY PERSON KNOWN: “Tim Lovell, my hockey coach growing up. He’s just a character on and off the ice and he’s just close with all of kids, so, I mean, he has a very personal relationship with all of us.”
TOUGHEST COMPETITORS FACED: “I played Connor McDavid a few years ago, and he’s just … it’s almost a little bit unfair. It was in Northeastern in U16s, he was on the Marlies and that’s where I played him.”
MOST MEMORABLE GOAL: “Probably in a little combine over the summer a few years ago. Kinda went down and split the D, went in on the goalie, threw a little deke up and kinda shelved it. As a D-man I wasn’t really expected to do something like that, so it kind of worked out.”
FUNNY HOCKEY MEMORY: “It’s not really funny, but we were playing this team two years ago that was just far-and-away better than us, and we ended up beating them like 7-1. It was just a blast on the ice the whole time, just a great time.”
FAVORITE PLAYRS TO WATCH: “Right now I like Victor Hedman, just the way he plays D, and Tyler Johnson too. They’re both really good.”
FAVORITE SPORT OUTSIDE HOCKEY: “Probably give to lacrosse. I started playing when I was in third grade. It’s such a big sport out east. It’s loaded out there.”
PERSONALITY QUALITIES ADMIRED IN OTHERS: “Just in general, I like honest people who are very forthcoming with their information and not trying to hide anything. People who are true to themselves and true to everyone around them.”
FAVORITE MOVIE: “Anchorman.”
IF NOT A HOCKEY PLAYER, WHAT: “I have no idea.”
HIDDEN TALENTS: “I don’t think I have any. I honestly don’t know.”
WHAT DO YOU HAVE TO HAVE: “I gotta have a water on my bed-side table every night, or else I won’t be able to sleep.”
NICKNAME: “Holway, just my last name.”
PREFERRED JERSEY NUMBER: “21 because we had a family friend (Paul Trendowicz) back home who actually passed away. He wore No. 21.”
OFF DAYS: “I just like relaxing, kind of take my mind off the game for a little bit. Just focus on what I need to do to get my body back to full health.”
MOST FAMOUS PERSON IN PHONE: “I don’t know if I have any. Maybe (Jack) Eichel, I guess.”
GUILTY PLEASURES: “Video games, I guess. I don’t play a lot, but I like to play NHL.”
ABSOLUTELY HAVE TO DO/HAVE BEFORE EVERY GAME: “I’ve got to shock my legs in the shower. What I’ll do is put really cold water on them for about a minute, and then I’ll put really hot water on them for a minute. It just loosens up the legs and makes your muscles feel better.”
MORNING PERSON OR NIGHT OWL: “More of a morning person. I wake up early and don’t tend to sleep in too much.”
IF YOU COULD BE SOMEONE’S TEAMMATE FOR A DAY, WHO: “Jonathan Toews probably because of how he controls himself in and out of the rink. He’s just an unbelievable role model for every youth hockey player.”
GO BACK IN TIME MOMENT: “I wish, really, that I could go back and try to focus on working out and putting on more weight back when I was first developing so that I would be thicker now. I realize that now and I’m starting to put on more weight. It’s starting to work out.”
WHAT SCARES YOU: “I don’t want to say I’m scared of getting hurt, but, I mean, it’s always there, you know. It’s a tough game and everyone’s competing, so it’s tough not to think about it, really.”
MOST EMBARRASSING CHILDHOOD MOMENT: “Probably the fact that I had to wear a hockey helmet around my house because I was like top heavy. So, I’d go upstairs and I’d fall down and hit my head. I had to wear a hockey helmet when I was younger. … You probably didn’t see that one coming.”