Mandatory Credit: Gregory Shamus/Getty Images
- Kyle Beach
2012-13 AHL Stats
Drafted: First round, 11th overall, 2008 NHL Entry Draft
Billed as a gritty, offensive contributor, Kyle Beach can use his big frame to agitate as well as help with production. 200 Penalty minutes is a huge number, but Beach managed to reach it in less than a full season with the Rockford IceHogs, the Blackhawks’ AHL affiliate. Beach has put offensive production on hold, and in its place is a less favorable style of play, one that has not earned him many fans over the years.
Road To The NHL:
Beach is not only a unique case, but a rare failure among Blackhawks prospects. Going into the 2008 NHL Draft, Beach caught the eye of several teams with the opportunity to be a durable goal-scorer. With an exceptional stride, he held lots of potential, even though he had a undisciplined reputation.
Beach looked like a solid pick early on, spending a whirlwind WHL season with over a point-per-game average. In his rookie season in Rockford, Beach looked shaky, but on the right track, with 36 points in 71 games.
The failure of Beach is rather unfortunate; after starting off the 2011-12 season great, Beach found himself on the Injured Reserve with a torn shoulder suffered in a fight. He was held to only 19 appearances that season, scoring 10 points.
Beach has let his talent escape him recently, and found himself in the penalty box all too often. No player could take 200 minutes of ‘good’ penalties, and Beach was often involved in unnecessary situations, ones that hindered himself and the IceHogs. Even more disappointing was the false expectations he gave Blackhawks fans, after taking home Player of the Week honors in the first leg of the campaign.
Promotion Probability: 0/10
Kyle Beach will see his time with the Blackhawks organization come to an end next summer. GM Stan Bowman was on his last nerve when he signed Beach to a one-year deal, and there is no word on any improvements in off-season discipline or training regimen.
Beach isn’t all to blame for his failure; the Blackhawks do not have a need for a player like him anymore, after they proved that they could do just fine without Daniel Carcillo in the 2013 season. Also, the IceHogs had loads of Blackhawks on the farm during the first portion of the season due to the lockout, and Beach found himself on the back-burner. However, Beach never stuck to the original game plan, using his grit to put the puck in the net and help his team win games.
Training camp will be the beginning of the end for Beach, and even the most optimistic are pulling at straws when finding opportunities for Beach. Not every move is a success, and with the Talon era long gone in Chicago, Beach could be the last failure for a long time.
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