Former 1st-Rounder, Ex-Maple Leaf, Looks For NHL Return After 5-Year Absence

He was a first-round pick (No. 15 overall) back in 2009. He hasn't played in the NHL for 5½ years, since the 2017-18 season. He retired in early 2022. But 32-year-old center Peter Holland is on the comeback trail and has made a decision to continue on his PTO with the Colorado Avalanche at their AHL affiliate. 

Holland will try to rekindle his NHL career by working his way into form with the Colorado Eagles. 

Since playing 23 games with the New York Rangers in '17-18 (one goal, three assists), Holland played in the AHL for a year, then headed to Russia to play a couple of seasons with Yekaterinburg Automobilist of the KHL (79 points in 119 games), then to Sweden for a short stint in 2021-22, before "retiring" and completely sitting out from professional hockey last season. 

He signed a professional tryout contract with the Avs this summer as the first step in a comeback attempt.

Holland was the first-round pick of the Anaheim Ducks in 2009, and first broke into the NHL in 2012. He hit his peak with two full seasons in his hometown with the Toronto Maple Leafs in 2014-15 and 2015-16, when he recorded 52 points in 127 games. He never had a full-time role in the NHL after that. 

Now, all these years later, Peter Holland is not giving up the fight. 

 Photo: Kevin Hoffman-USA TODAY Sports