Detroit Red Wings prospect forward Dylan Larkin is coming off a brief but impressive showing in the American Hockey League playoffs with the Grand Rapids Griffins, but will he be able to make the jump to the NHL next season?
Is he ready?
Larkin, selected 15th overall in last year’s draft, opted to sign an entry-level deal with the Red Wings and join the Griffins in their Calder Cup playoff run, ending his time at Michigan after one year.
He entered into the AHL Western Conference final series against the Utica Comets, however Grand Rapids was eliminated in six games.
“It doesn’t matter what I think,” Michigan coach Red Berenson told the Detroit Free Press. “I think Dylan is going to play in the NHL. I told him that. I don’t know that he’s ready at this point to compete for a regular job in the NHL.”
Larkin, still only 18 years old, finished the series with three goals, including two in the second game, and it sounds like he made a strong impression on the man believed to be taking over the head coaching job in Detroit next season.
“Dylan is continuing to assert himself out there and be a real impact player for us,” Griffins coach Jeff Blashill told MLive.com during the series. “And he’s got to be because he’s getting big minutes as well.”