Player Profile: Kyle Brodziak

Kyle Brodziak

Kyle Brodziak

Born – 5/25/1984
Position –
C
Ht –
6’2”
Wt –
209
Shoots –
Right

Brodziak has shown flashes of offensive ability with Minnesota

The Skinny
Brodziak had a career season last season for the second straight year with the franchise, tallying a career high 16 goals en route to a 37 point season, and he could be poised for another strong season this year too.

The biggest hurdle that Brodziak has in his way, however, is not having his chemistry partner, Martin Havlat, with him. Brodziak and Havlat had instant chemistry with one another and Brodziak’s gritty game complemented Havlat’s considerably not gritty game well.

Will he be able to be successful without his dynamic winger next to him?

I think he will, for a couple of reasons.

First, Brodziak will likely be playing alongside Cal Clutterbuck, and possibly a youngster like Colton Gillies or a player like Eric Nystrom – all players who have some offensive upside; maybe more than they have gotten to display in the past. Clutterbuck has shown that he has the potential to be a 20-goal scorer, while both Gillies and Nystrom have exhibited goal scoring ability, regardless of how snakebit they may have been at certain points in time.

Second, Brodziak is likely going to be slotted in on the second power play, unless Mike Yeo has different ideas.

We know that the first will probably involve some iteration of Mikko Koivu, Dany Heatley, Devin Setoguchi and Pierre-Marc Bouchard or Matt Cullen running the point. That takes four of the Wild’s top-six and puts them on one line. Whichever of Bouchard or Cullen isn’t on the top power play will likely be running the point on the second unit, which would leave two forward slots open.

Power play time is going to be key to Brodziak's production this season

Brodziak will probably be one of those forwards.

Extra power play time means that he’ll have every opportunity to produce for the Wild and all Brodziak has done anytime he has been given an opportunity to impress, is impress.

This Season
Brodziak is going to be in competition for the second-line center job, but he might be best suited for the third-line role unless his chemistry with Guillaume Latendresse shines through.

Odds are, though, is that Brodziak will at least start the season in a checking-line role.

That might not necessarily be good for his production, but it’s definitely the role he’s best suited for at this juncture. There’s no one else on the team that plays that particular role better than Brodziak does and it’s the role his skill set is best suited for.

That doesn’t mean he shouldn’t be the one to fill the role on the second power play and that doesn’t mean he shouldn’t get the opportunity to produce like he has in the past.

Prediction
Brodziak is seen as a third-line, role player by many buy he has a definite up side that can come out in the right circumstances. Will those circumstances come about this season, though? I think they could, if he can find chemistry with his line mates, but I’m skeptical as to whether or not he will be able to if he’s playing on the third line. I do think, however, that the power play time he’ll see will be invaluable to his production and I think that he’ll push Cullen for that second line role at some point.

My prediction for Kyle Brodziak this season is:

81 GP, 18 G, 20 A, 28 PTS

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