The Pipeline Show is excited to bring you a series of guest player blogs by some of the top players eligible for the 2009 NHL Entry Draft. For a complete recap of the blogs so far, click on '2009 Guest Blogs' under 'Labels' down the right-hand side of your screen. To date we have heard from John Moore, defenceman with the Chicago Steel in the USHL, and Ethan Werek of the Kingston Frontenacs. Today we are pleased to present part one of 'Dylan On The Draft' with Camrose Kodiak and soon to be Minnesota-Duluth D-man Dylan Olsen who recently suited up for Canada at the U-18 World Championship.
Over all I thought that the U-18's was a great experience, although it would have been better to come back home with a medal it was still a great tournament to play in. We started out meeting as a team for the first time in Minnesota, where we had practice and did a lot of team bonding so that we would go into the tournament knowing one another and being able to play together as a team on the ice. The two exhibition games we had were huge for us as a team because it showed us what talent we had, and that if we were to use our teammates and work together we would do really well in the tournament.
We started the tournament off really well, going 4-0 in the round robin and getting a bye into the semi-finals. Those few days we had off were big for our team, because it let us get tons of rest and time to get ready for our next opponent. After finding out that we were going to face the U.S in the semi-final we knew that it was going to be a tough game and that they were going to come out flying and we had to be ready. After a few team meetings and some video work you could tell that the boys were ready and were willing to do whatever it took to win the game.
Although the outcome of the game was not what we wanted it was still a great game to play in, the speed and tempo of the game was fast and the crowd was really loud, and it was a really fun game to play in. After the game obviously everyone was very up set because our chance to play for gold was gone. But once we left the room we knew that another medal was on the line and we had to be ready for Finland.
After winning our exhibition game in overtime against Finland we knew what they were capable of doing, they were a very fast and skilled team, and if we wanted to win bronze we needed to come out flying. Once again the outcome of the game was not what we were expecting, we had a pretty good lead during the game, but we got into some penalty trouble in the third and they tied up the score. Overtime was pretty exciting with both teams getting some chances to score and end it, but we went into a shootout and they finished it scoring both goals.
It was a great tournament to play in because I was able to see what other talent there is in the world. Also it was good to be able to play with a bunch of great players from all across Canada, as a team we were pretty tight in the end and we had a lot of fun being able to represent our country.
The reason I decided to attend Minnesota Duluth for the 2010 season was because it seemed like the best fit for me to develop more as a hockey player and as an individual. There have been a few Kodiaks in the past that have gone there and they have gone on to greater things, such as Mason Raymond who is now playing for Vancouver in the NHL. I was looking for a school where i would come in and get some ice time as a freshman and make an impact on the team so that we could have success. And after talking to Duluth for a while and seeing what they had to offer I knew I wanted to be a bulldog.
As for getting ready for the draft, right now I am doing intense workouts twice a day to get ready for the combine testing, after talking to Joe Colborne, he told me to be ready for an intense few days and not to get overwhelmed by everything going on and just to go in there and do my best.
Dylan Olsen is ranked 39th by ISS in their April edition. At 6.02.5 and 205 pounds he's a very physical blueliner who can quarterback the power play. This past year the defencemen recorded 24 points in 49 games with Camrose of the AJHL.
Photos Courtesy: AJHL, Camrose Kodiaks, Hockey Canada