Kris Beech this afternoon won MVP for the 2003-2004 season for the WBS team awards, Many people write this guy off as he has had his chances to make the big club, but what he did in WBS this season was beyond amazing. If he doesn't make the big club next year, theres something wrong.
Can someone tell me why he didn't make the club this season?
because he didnt play good int raining camp, and then didnt play well in his call up. he will either be on the pens next year or be traded as he cant go to the minors w/o clearing waivers after this year
Worst case scenario, they do the same thing with Beech that they did with Kraft. SIt him until needed, then let him prove himself. Most likely though, he starts the year as the 3rd line center, giving Endicott one more year in the AHL, hopefully grabbing even more minutes than he already is.
The way I look at the Beech situation is that he has proved he can play at the AHL level, similar to the way Kraft did. In Beech's call-ups he didnt show much, but it didnt help that his pairing partners where sometimes Buchberger and Mckenna. Next year is a make or break year for Beech with the Pens. Like some have said, the 22-year old might be a healthy scratch for some games like Kraft was this year. I think he is coming around though. I do think the training and coaching staff should get on his butt about adding some weight this offseason. I think he makes the team next year, and could be put on a potentially decent 3rd line.
I do think the training and coaching staff should get on his butt about adding some weight this offseason.
Christ, how heavy do you want him to be? He put on about 15lbs last summer, entering camp this year at 212 and played the whole season between 205-210. Trained with Trevor Linden et al in Vancouver under Peter Twist, who said Beech was in the strongest & best condition he'd seen him in four years.
Beech leads Pens camp in scoring, then gets sent to WBS after a token couple of preseason games. Called up for 4 games early-season for an "opportunity", given oodles of ice time (12min/game), decent on faceoffs, moved the puck well on the PP, wasn't on for any goals against; not spectacular, but solid and at the very least worthy of a longer look.
Anyone who thinks Beech's incentive laden contract hasn't been a major reason for his preclusion from the NHL needs to give their head a shake. His contract doesn't follow the Thorton model (i.e. reach 2, cash in on all 6, or however it goes), so a lot of his performance thresholds are more easily achievable. For instance, for being the 6th forward in ice time during his 2001/2002 season he received a $350,000 bonus...........Clearly, the Pens couldn't have afforded Beech under his current contract had he played up to expectations. With a new contract that excludes incentives, hopefully he'll get a legitimate shot to play for some NHL club next season (whenever that is).
Recognizing Beech's offensive talent, Michel Therrien was quoted by a WBS paper as saying, "This is a guy, eventually, who will be able to play on the top two lines in the NHL." He may just need an NHL coach and organization that will show confidence in him, and give him a reasonable amount of time to find his comfort zone in the NHL. I think once this kid improves his first-three steps (his top-end speed is good, he just needs to work hard on acceleration this summer), he'll produce quite effectively as a top 2-liner at the NHL level. For now, let's wish him well in leading WBS deep into the playoffs.
In Beech's defence, he has not been paired up well in any of his stints in the NHL. His first year he played a bit with Mario, but in the 2002-2003 season he was up on a line with Daigle and I forget who else. But he hid pretty good for a 4th liner call-up.
He will. He just needs more than 10 minutes a night to show it.
Agreed....hopefully he can get a solid chance to prove himself. This year will certainly be make-or-break for him...I can see him being dealt if he falters in camp, but it did take awhile for Kraft to turn it up....personally, I think Beech will stick with the big club....
Well I haven't seen Beech play at all this year, so I am just going off what I have seen him do in the past and what I've read around different boards.First off I hope Beech can have a year where he can stick with the pens fill time ....ala Milan Kraft.
Second I hope he works on a few things this up in coming summer, one being playing more physical or some would say playing with more of an edge.And more explosive skating out of the blocks, what I have seen of Beech is that it takes few more strides than others to get up to speed.I think that I should mention is he could of had better numbers if he he'd stayed healthy this year.
Overall well done Beech on a good year , and good luck going into camp.
I would have given the MVP to Ouellet, but I can't say Beech isn't deserving. After all, I only listenend to about 25-30 games.
I disagree that Beech has a big problem with physicality. Listening in to games and from reading, he's been willing to get into traffic and take the body. From what I remember in the training camp reports on LetsGoPens.com, he developed a nice mean streak and was a constant irritant on the ice, a la Matt Barnaby. Not to mention he's definitely put the work in by adding quite a bit of muscle to his frame, Beech is no longer the pushover beanpole he used to be. By the same token, he's no Joe Thornton, but at least he's shown a willingness and the effort to improve physically and get his nose dirty. The physical aspect of his game is only going to get better with time.
He has to learn to drive to the net more often, he's still too much of a perimeter player. Much like Kraft was before this season.
I disagree that Beech has a big problem with physicality. Listening in to games and from reading, he's been willing to get into traffic and take the body. From what I remember in the training camp reports on LetsGoPens.com, he developed a nice mean streak and was a constant irritant on the ice, a la Matt Barnaby.
I wouldn't quite put him in the Barnaby class as far as irritators go, but I can tell you that I thought he played a very physical game throughout training camp, which I watched in person. I was very impressed.
To be honest, it bothers me that people are saying that he needs to be more physical, because I'm not sure I agree. I think he's already there...at least when it comes to fighting for loose pucks in the corners and such. If you say that he still needs to drive to the net more, then I'll take your word on that. I'll have to watch for that in particular next training camp (whenever that is).
Based on the limited number of games I saw this year with him, I did feel there is a bit of a irritant-streak to him. I wouldn't personally use Barnaby as a comparison, but the name that comes to my head is Mike Fisher. For whatever reason, I have this odd premonition of a Kostopolous-Beech-Armstrong line as a really solid, grinding, third line that could produce for the Pens within the next couple of seasons.
From what I can figure that happened because Lupy was injured for part of the first half of the season. Boileau was in the line-up every game for WBS except for when he was in Pittsburgh, and he made the best of it. Thats why Boileau got MVP for Defence.
What I wanna know is why did Endicott get shafted in all this?