A few years ago, Dominik Bokk was considered an exceptional talent and upcoming NHL star. But in the meantime other players like Moritz Seider or Tim Stützle have passed him. However, the sloppy genius has no regrets - and flourishes at the DEL promoted Frankfurt.
He was considered the greatest ice hockey talent after Leon Draisaitl, as the one who does four tricks in one second: Four years ago Dominik Bokk was an NHL star-to-be - the first of an extraordinary generation. But while the younger Moritz Seider or Tim Stützle have long since made it to the goal of their dreams, the now 22-year-old is stuck a few classes down.
"I'm not jealous," says Bokk, "I'm really happy for the boys, but it doesn't work for everyone right away." Seider and Stützle are already top performers in Detroit and Ottawa, John Peterka has also made the jump to the NHL team in Buffalo, and Lukas Reichel is about to do so in Chicago.
Bokk, who was the best scorer at the U20 World Cup three years ago, has now landed at DEL promoted Löwen Frankfurt, his sixth club since 2019. The St. Louis Blues, who selected him in the first round of the draft, passed him on to the Carolina Hurricanes, where his contract is suspended. "I don't think so much about the NHL," says the highly talented striker, who is at least returning to international ice: At the Germany Cup in Krefeld, Bokk is making his comeback in the senior team after three and a half years.
After a mixed time with the Växjö Lakers, BK Rögle and Djurgardens IF in Sweden, the Chicago Wolves in the AHL and an interlude with the Eisbären Berlin, he seems to have found happiness in Frankfurt. As the third-best scorer and scorer in the German Ice Hockey League (DEL), the winger played a key role in the strong start to the season for the promoted team, showing his great potential.
"I've felt very comfortable since day one, I get the role I imagined," says Bokk, "that gave me a lot of self-confidence." National coach Toni Söderholm also noticed that, after six international matches in preparation for the 2019 World Cup, he had not nominated him - until now. "There was room for improvement, that he is tougher on himself, that he fulfills his potential in every game and every training session," says the Finn.
Bokk, who moved to Sweden at the age of 17, was seen as a sloppy genius who lacked the right work ethic given his outstanding technical qualities. "I don't regret anything I've done in the last four years," says Bokk, "I see everything positively, it comes as it comes."
However, he admits: "Maturity has come with it. I've definitely become stronger in a duel." Söderholm wants to see "where he stands internationally" against Denmark on Thursday (7.45 p.m. / MagentaSport), on Saturday (5.30 p.m. / Sport1 and MagentaSport) against Austria and on Sunday (2.30 p.m. / MagentaSport) against Slovakia.
If at least Bokk's dream of the first A-WM next year in Tampere and Riga (May 12th to 28th, 2023) should come true, a Frankfurt teammate would probably have a part in it. Because former Stanley Cup winner Carter Rowney rubbed off on him: "I want to come into the hall every day and give 100 percent, whether it's training or a game." Maybe it will be something with the NHL after all: "I'm still very young."