#9 - Dustin Wolf
2019-20 Team: Everett Silvertips (WHL)
Drafted in 2019, Round 7, #214
2019 Ranking: #19
I try not to get too hyped on young prospects, especially ones that haven’t played a single game of professional hockey yet, but man Dustin Wolf made that tough this year. While I can’t confirm this, I’m pretty sure we’ve never had a goaltender or 7th round pick ranked this highly on our Top 25 Under 25’s, especially this early in their career.
After being just four picks away from going undrafted in the summer, Wolf responded with another ridiculous season with the Silvertips. He put up a 34-10-2 record with a .936 SV% and 1.88 GAA. Amazingly enough, these numbers were actually a very slight step back from 2018-19 where he had a .936 SV% and 1.69 GAA.
Simply put, Wolf’s WHL numbers were just stupid this season. The WHL and junior hockey in general is known for it’s high scoring games which can obviously wreak havoc on goaltending stats. Wolf finished tied for 1st in wins, first in shutouts with nine (next closest had five), SV% at .935 (next closest had .929), and GAA with 1.88 (next closest had 2.20). As a result, Wolf won the Del Wilson Memorial Trophy for the WHL’s best goaltender, and then went on to win the CHL Goaltender of the Year award as well.
Unfortunately the pandemic cut Wolf’s season short as his Silvertips were battling the Portland Winterhawks hard down the stretch for the top spot in the US Division along with the top spot in the entire WHL.
Wolf also spent part of the year with the United States team at the World Juniors, backing up Spencer Knight. Wolf only got into one game in the tournament, however it was a victory over Germany. It looks to be a similar role this year as he backs up Knight again but may get a longer look this time. He was named the Goaltender of the Year by USA Hockey as well.
The Flames locked Wolf down with an ELC on May 1. While he is still at least probably three years away from really having a shot at the NHL, his high potential is already making fans drool. For those looking to see him in action, be sure to watch the World Juniors for now with the WHL not slated to start until January 8.