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Is Red Wings Defenseman Dennis Cholowski a Bust?

The Red Wings did not protect a couple of former first-round draft selections for the upcoming NHL Expansion Draft.

The Detroit Red Wings invested the No. 20 overall pick in the 2016 NHL Entry Draft on defenseman Dennis Cholowski. 

Unfortunately, his tenure playing for the Wings has not gone according to plan for anyone involved. 

In his career, Cholowski has scored 10 goals and 27 points, but is a  minus-47 in 104 NHL games.

On Sunday, the protection list of all NHL teams ahead of the expansion draft was revealed. 

General manager Steve Yzerman decided to protect goaltender Thomas Greiss, defensemen Filip Hronek, Nick Leddy, Gustav Lindstrom and forwards Dylan Larkin, Robby Fabbri, Tyler Bertuzzi, Jakub Vrana, Adam Erne, Michael Rasmussen and Givani Smith.

Unfortunately for Cholowski, he was left exposed by the only organization he has played for in the NHL. 

Among the players left exposed include goaltender Jonathan Bernier, defensemen Danny DeKeyser, Troy Stecher along with forwards Vladislav Namestnikov and Evgeny Svechnikov. 

According to the Detroit Free Press, "Cholowski, 23, has not developed into the potential the Wings saw in him in 2016, when then-GM Ken Holland and director of amateur scouting Tyler Wright described Cholowski as a high-end offensive defenseman."

He has not been able to gain traction with the organization, and has already fallen behind other young defensemen in the Wings' system. 

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"He is an NHL-caliber skater and passer, but his lack of assertiveness has cost him multiple chances at establishing a foothold with the Wings."

It is a possible a fresh start could aid the young defenseman, but if the Seattle Kraken decide to select a player like Stecher, Cholowski must find improved avenues to impress Detroit's new management. 

2021 NHL Expansion Draft

When: Wed., July 21

Time: 8 p.m. ET

TV: ESPN2

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