29-Year-Old Defenseman – Florida Panthers
Jakub Kindl Contract Information:
Re-signed with the Red Wings in June 2013 on a four-year, $9.6 million contract.
Kindl was recalled from AHL Portland on Monday.
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RotoWire's Preseason Outlooks
There was no outlook written for Jakub Kindl.
Kindl has improved his point total every season since joining the Red Wings, upping his output to 19 points in 66 games in 2013-14. He's known primarily for his defensive prowess, but will go for an occasional offensive outburst. Unfortunately, his fantasy statistics are rather mediocre, contributing roughly average numbers down the line. Fantasy GMs would be advised to look elsewhere for standout figures.
Kindl put together a surprisingly solid season in 2012-13, grabbing 13 points and a new four-year contract in the process. Kindl and Brendan Smith developed a good chemistry together, and despite some hiccups in the postseason they are primed to be a solid defensive pairing for a long time. If Kindl continues to raise his game, he could have some fantasy value heading into the coming years.
Kindl entered the offseason with an uncertain future in Detroit, but an exodus on the blue line has put him back in the mix for regular duty as part of the team's third defensive pairing. To this point in his career, Kindl has at times failed to provide the grit the Wings are looking for on its blue line, which has resulted in stretches of lost playing time and inconsistent production at the offensive end. Entering camp, he's far down the list of potential power-play options on the blue line, which makes him waiver-wire fodder in most formats as Kindl still needs to compete for his ice time at even strength.
Kindl was limited to 48 games with the Wings during his first full NHL campaign, but head coach Mike Babcock was pleased with the transformation of the former first-round pick as the season rolled along. Although he showed the ability to contribute at the offensive end during his time in junior hockey, Kindl enters training camp battling for the final spot in the team's top-six blueline corps and he'll be pushed by prospect Brendan Smith and veteran Mike Commodore for ice time early on.
Kindl is a toolsy blueliner with top-four potential, but he suffers from inconsistent play at times and he still hasn't fulfilled his offensive potential. In the short term, he's going to battle Jonathan Ericsson for minutes in the team's third blue-line pairing with veteran Ruslan Salei, but it remains to be seen if he'll ever emerge as the sure-handed back-end option that the Wings can rely on for heavy minutes. If he's committing costly turnovers, he'll be spending time in the press box as the seventh defenseman, but Kindl could be a 15-20 point player if he's able to earn the trust of head coach Mike Babcock and appear in 65-70 games.
Kindl had 27 points in 43 games en route to being named an AHL All-Star last season, but he slumped down the stretch with just six points in his last 35 contests. He's an offensive-minded blueliner that the Red Wings feel will eventually be a top-four defenseman down the road, but Kindl is going to be spending most -- if not all -- of the 2009-10 season at Grand Rapids refining his defensive game and trying to put together a more consistent effort over an entire season.
Kindl projects as an eventual top-paring blueliner at the NHL level, but heíll need more time at Grand Rapids (AHL) and at least a year in Detroit learning from the seasoned vets before getting full consideration for a prominent role. He was a bit quiet at the offensive end for the Griffins last season (3 G, 14 A in 75 games), but Kindl is just 21 years old and he experienced a huge boost in production his second season at Kitchener (OHL). Donít be surprised if he has a breakout campaign in Grand Rapids this time around.
For a defenseman who has good size at 6-2 and 200 pounds, Kindl is very mobile. He is a very good passer and should eventually turn into quite an asset on the power play. Kindl played last season with Kitchener of the OHL, his third season with the Rangers. He had 55 points in 54 games and also chipped in 142 penalty minutes. The former 2005 first-round pick (19th overall) has been in North America since 2004, so he should already be used to the smaller ice surface. He should eventually settle in as a third, or possibly even a second defenseman for the Red Wings.
Kindl had a good preseason but will likely spend the season developing his skills in the AHL.
First rounder from 2005 will probably put in another year of junior hockey.
Kindl arrived in the OHL in 2004-2005 with the tag of being a guaranteed top-10 pick in the 2005 draft, but had a hard time adjusting in his time with the Kitchener Rangers. Chalk last season up to growing pains -- he has the skill to be a top-flight offensive defenseman.