Sharks Draft Pick Sadowy’s Unbreakable Spirit

Tuesday, 07.1.2014 / 3:43 PM PT / News
By Dan Marrazza  - Staff Writer
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Sharks Draft Pick Sadowy\u2019s Unbreakable Spirit
Sharks 2014 draft pick Dylan Sadowy enjoyed a breakout campaign with the Ontario Hockey League\u2019s Saginaw Spirit amidst dealing with a personal tragedy.

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times.

Those words, originally immortalized by Charles Dickens in “A Tale of Two Cities”, might be the best way to describe this past season for 2014 Sharks third-round draft pick Dylan Sadowy.

On the one hand, the 6-foot-1, net-crashing forward enjoyed a breakout campaign with the Ontario Hockey League’s Saginaw Spirit. He improved from scoring a team-low two goals in 2012-13 and being left out of Central Scouting’s Draft rankings prior to the season to scoring a team-leading 27 goals and wearing a Sharks sweater on Draft Day.

On the other hand, as much as the success of the past season should’ve made the last nine months the most enjoyable months of Sadowy’s life, his success came in the wake of extreme tragedy.

Terry Trafford, Sadowy’s close friend and junior teammate in Saginaw, went missing last February, only to be found dead a week later. Authorities deemed Trafford’s death a probable suicide; a final result of a terrible series of events which details are still shrouded in mystery.

“Him and Dylan were close friends,” says Spirit head coach Greg Gilbert of the relationship between Trafford and the Sharks’ 2014 third-round selection.

“Dylan’s a pretty stoic young man, and he’s got a good sense of humor. But, he was maybe a little quiet for a while after something like that happened. It was tough for him. It’s something you have to live with, you have to learn from it and you have to move on.

“Motivation was something that Dylan took from something like that that’s tragic, and he tried to use it in a positive direction for himself. This is something a mature young man would do.”

Looking at the bigger picture of life, the significance of athletic competition occasionally overshadows realities more integral to a person’s well-being than the final score. Although this almost makes it seem crass to relate the unnecessary loss of a 20-year-old kid who also played hockey to the goal-scoring binge his close friend and teammate went on following his passing, the fact is that the Sharks’ draftee did enjoy one heck of a season in the midst of what could’ve been emotionally crippling circumstances.

And although on-ice success seems to be a minor consolation prize for Sadowy in terms of a season where he forever lost one of his closest friends, it’s hard not to recognize the tangible effect that his on-ice success this year will have on Sadowy's life.

Because for a kid left off of Central Scouting’s Draft list last summer who seemed to be a longshot to be drafted, Sadowy’s fearless nature that allowed him to confront harsh realities off the ice and score the greasiest of net-front goals on the ice was something that may be what forever spawned his career, and a life, as a pro hockey player.

“He always told me I’d do it,” says Sadowy of his fallen teammate. “Right now, I know he’d be proud of me.”


SHARKS 2014 NHL DRAFT CLASS FACTS
 Round 1, Pick 27 - F Nikolay Goldobin  Round 3, Pick 81 - F Dylan Sadowy
 Round 2, Pick 46 - D Julius Bergman  Round 4, Pick 102 - D Alexis Vanier
 Round 2, Pick 53 - F Noah Rod  Round 5, Pick 149 - F Rourke Chartier
 Round 3, Pick 72 - F Alex Schoenborn  Round 6, Pick 171 - F Kevin Labanc

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STANDINGS

WESTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 x - ANA 78 49 22 7 227 216 105
2 x - NSH 77 47 22 8 220 188 102
3 STL 75 46 22 7 228 186 99
4 CHI 75 45 24 6 213 175 96
5 MIN 76 44 25 7 219 186 95
6 VAN 75 43 27 5 215 203 91
7 WPG 76 39 25 12 215 201 90
8 CGY 76 41 28 7 224 201 89
9 LAK 75 37 24 14 200 188 88
10 DAL 76 37 29 10 236 243 84
11 SJS 76 37 30 9 212 215 83
12 COL 75 35 28 12 205 209 82
13 EDM 75 22 40 13 181 254 57
14 ARI 76 23 45 8 160 252 54

STATS

2014-2015 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Pavelski 76 36 31 9 67
L. Couture 76 25 37 -4 62
J. Thornton 72 14 48 -5 62
B. Burns 76 16 40 -6 56
P. Marleau 76 17 36 -17 53
T. Wingels 69 15 20 -5 35
T. Hertl 76 12 17 -2 29
M. Nieto 66 8 16 -11 24
M. Vlasic 70 9 14 12 23
J. Braun 65 1 22 6 23
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
A. Stalock 7 7 2 .905 2.55
A. Niemi 29 22 7 .914 2.62
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