Acquired in a trade just before the start of this season, the Carolina Hurricanes acquired a prospect from St Louis, but how has he progressed?
Dominik Bokk was acquired from St Louis in a trade alongside Joel Edmundson that sent Justin Faulk to the gateway to the west. Giving up such a big name like Faulk meant there was going to be a lot of pressure on Bokk to become everything that he was projected to be when he was drafted 25th overall in 2018. Especially with Edmundson most likely walking in the offseason.
So how has the German native progressed? Brief fact, should Bokk make an appearance for the Carolina Hurricanes, he will be the first German to do so since Dennis Seidenberg.
Back to Bokk. We’ve all seen him on the big stage at the World Junior Championships for the aforementioned German team, and we saw just how deadly he can be with the puck on his blade. In just 7 games with team Germany at the World Juniors, Bokk established an excellent 6 goals and 2 assists.
So with such a big splash at the world juniors, you’d expect Bokk to have a similar display in the Swedish Hockey League, yet he just did not have that affect. Bokk had just 11 goals and 6 assists in 45 games for Rogle BK. It’s not the point per game rate he had at the world juniors.
So, this leads to the question of why? Is the German national team just better than Rogle? Is it just easier for him to communicate with fellow countrymen? To be quite honest, I do not know. But Bokk is proving himself as a goal-scorer and that is something that needs to be appreciated. There’s a lot to be said about someone who can just put the puck in the goal, especially in the NHL.
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Someone I have heard Bokk compared to time and time again is Edmonton’s James Neal in the sense that he has a nose for the net. He’s got a heavy, quick release that’s deadly on the power-play as well as 5 on 5. At 6’2, Bokk has a similar stature to that of Neal. If Bokk can put on a little more muscle, and increase his weight a little, he could very well be a dominant player in the NHL.
So, what next for Dominik Bokk? Staying in Sweden may help his progression to continue to improve in a league he already knows what he can do, it’s a visible improvement in that sense. Coming to the AHL may also be an option. Getting used to American ice will help in the long term, and it allows the team to watch him even closer and monitor his development.
On top of that, he may be a nice replacement in the AHL for a player the Canes traded away a couple of days before the trade deadline in Julien Gauthier. Another big-framed right-handed shot, Bokk could come in and aid the Canes AHL affiliate in that role, whomever it may be next season. Bokk already has an entry-level contract signed from St Louis so he could slot right in.
Either way, it’s certain that Bokk has shown flashes of brilliance over his short time as a Carolina Hurricanes prospect. He’s shown his natural scoring ability on more than one occasion and shows plenty of promise going forward. If he just finds that brilliance consistently, he will be a fantastic player in the NHL for years to come.