“Success doesn’t come and find you. You have to go get it.”
Silvertips winger Bryce Kindopp went through a season of tempo changes, lineup changes, and at times what appeared to be stat sheet changes.
For a first season of high level play in the Western Hockey League, the breakneck pace can make your head feel like never-ending topspin.
Nonetheless, he ultimately became a regular contributor on a division championship club. Still filling out at a 6-foot-1 and 175 pound frame, Kindopp earned a spot in the lineup for 60 games, many including high-impact and critical minutes when the Silvertips were maneuvering the injury waters. Often times, he would find himself in a demanding first line role and the next night asked to be a calming presence on a depth line role. He still found a way to manufacture seven goals, 14 points, a pair of power play goals, and a snazzy shorthanded strike.
He even had his first career two-goal game, Nov. 30 in a 5-0 dismantling of Kootenay.
He also scored the first goal of the Silvertips season, a 7-3 thrashing of Vancouver on national television. So he kind of has the spotlight thing understood.
So what’s next for Kindopp, transitioning into a more “seasoned” role with his 17-year old campaign behind him? He has the numbers: 63 points in 35 games at the bantam level and 67 points in 66 games in his midget campaign. He has the credentials: in 2014, he was the second player off the board in the Silvertips draft.
Assistant coach Mitch Love explains more from this past season, and what lies ahead:
LOVE: “Bryce is a kid who spent time with us as a 15-year old, came up short (making the Tips roster) as a 16-year-old, and was part of our hockey club this past year. In terms of where he needs to go, the biggest thing is consistency. There were moments last year – like Orrin Centazzo – where he was up and down our lineup, whether it was the first or fourth line. He was able to put in quality minutes. There were other games you weren’t sure what kind of Bryce Kindopp you were going to get.
His biggest thing moving into an 18-year old season is finding that consistency. On an everyday basis to be an elite player at this level.”
RE: WHERE KINDOPP’S IDENTITY CAN TAKE SHAPE
LOVE: “Well, he’s a type of kid who is a ‘feel good’ type of player. I find his personality where if he’s feeling good about things, then he’ll play and well and has confidence to play well – like many young players. But when he plays to a ‘blah’ personality, that’s where he plays with inconsistency. Now as an 18-year-old, those excuses like ‘he’s a young kid’ go out the window – he has to determine where he wants to play, either as a top six or bottom six forward.”