By the looks of it Blackhawks prospect Kyle Beach, drafted 11th overall in 2008, might finally get what it takes to make it to the NHL.
The AHL named Kyle Beach their player of the week for the period ending November 4th. Kyle's big weekend, 2 goals against the Wolves on Friday and a goal and 2 assists on Saturday versus Lake Erie, was enough for the honor. It was nice to Beach put up some good numbers on the score sheet besides penalty minutes.
When Dale Tallon drafted Beach with the 11th overall pick in 2008, we all drooled over the a big, physical power forward that can score goals. Beach averaged just over a point per game in his four plus seasons in the WHL. He made a lot of us excited when he had 86 points (52 G, 34 A) for the Spokane Chiefs in 2009-2010. But, Beach couldn't stop being a meathead as he racked up 773 PIM in 251 games in the WHL.
Since Beach has moved to Rockford full time, his offensive numbers have gone down but his penalty minutes have remained a problem. Last season it looked like Kyle was turning a corner. He had 10 points and only 30 penalty minutes in 19 games. His season was shorted by a shoulder injury he suffered during a fight in Peoria in October. I wrote an article last February wondering if Beach could have been last year's Andrew Shaw had he not been injured.
What Beach needs to realize is that being a goal scorer is his fast track to the NHL, not being a goon. The Blackhawks already have enough shitheads on the roster with Daniel Carcillo and Brandon Bollig. If Beach wants to make it to Chicago any time soon he needs to show more of the offensive promise he showed in the WHL. If all he wants to do is keep taking dumb penalty after dumb penalty then enjoy your career in the bus leagues buddy.
The IceHogs are committing penalties at an alarming rate so far this season. In 10 games the IceHogs have been shorthanded a league leading 62 times already. This is something that has to change, possibly starting with making a change behind the bench. If the Blackhawks want to be an elite franchise for years to come you can not have your pipeline to the NHL full of undisciplined players. Hopefully Beach can concentrate on lighting the goal lamp instead of opening the penalty box door and reach his potential in Chicago.