The journey from the BCHL to the National Hockey League is complete for Chilliwack Chiefs grad Dennis Cholowski.
The Langley native made his big-league debut Thursday night, scoring his first NHL goal as his Detroit Red Wings lost 3-2 on home ice to the Columbus Blue Jackets.
Halfway through the middle frame, Cholowski snuck in from the point and buried a backhand pass from Dylan Larkin behind Columbus goalie Joonas Korpisalo.
He also picked up a holding penalty.
Cholowski was a first round draft pick (20th overall) of Detroit in the 2006 NHL entry draft. After playing 36 games for the St. Cloud State University Huskies during the 2016-17 season, the defenceman left school to turn pro.
Cholowski signed a standard three-year entry level deal with the Red Wings and played one game with the American Hockey League’s Grand Rapids Griffins to close out that campaign.
Believing he needed more seasoning, the Red Wings sent Cholowski to major junior last year. He started the season with the Western Hockey League’s Prince George Cougars, playing 37 games before being traded to the Portland Winterhawks.
In 81 regular season and playoff games the 20 year old produced 19 goals and 73 points.
Cholowski finished the year playing one playoff game for the Griffins.
He came to Detroit camp looking to make an impression, and might have tipped the scales in his favour when he scored in a 4-3 preseason win over Boston. Two days prior, he recorded a pair of assists in a game against Pittsburgh.