2009-10: Brett Kulak skated for the PAC Saints and was named Alberta minor midget’s Defenseman of the Year. In 32 games he scored 4 goals with 34 assists and had 42 penalty minutes. In ten playoff games he scored 2 goals with 8 assists and had 14 penalty minutes.
2010-11: Kulak made his WHL debut with Vancouver at the beginning of the season before returning to Alberta to play for the St. Albert Raiders in the AMHL. Selected by the Giants in the ninth round (197th overall) of the 2009 WHL Bantam Draft, Kulak was scoreless and minus-one in three games with Vancouver. In 31 games with the Raiders he scored 9 goals with 18 assists and had 71 penalty minutes. In five playoff games, he had 1 goal and 1 assist.
2011-12: Kulak was one of two players to play in all 72 games for Vancouver in his first full WHL season. He scored 9 goals with 15 assists and was plus-28 with 22 penalty minutes for the Giants. Vancouver finished second in the B.C. Division behind Kamloops. In the Giants’ six-game playoff series with Spokane he had 4 assists and was minus-one with 2 penalty minutes. Kulak was invited to the NHL Draft Combine and ranked 55th amongst North American skaters in Central Scouting’s final rankings prior to the 2012 NHL Draft.
2012-13: Kulak made his pro hockey debut — skating in four games with Calgary AHL affiliate Abbotsford in April following his second WHL season. He had no points nor penalty minutes and was -1 with the Heat. Abbotsford missed the playoffs after finishing fourth in the North Division. Kulak skated in all 72 games for the Vancouver Giants for the second straight season. He was the Giants’ third-leading scorer (and top scorer amongst defensemen) with 12 goals and 32 assists and was -34 with 34 penalty minutes. Vancouver finished last in the B.C. Division with the WHL’s worst record; winning 21 games.
2013-14: Kulak signed a three-year entry-level contract with Calgary in March 2014 and again joined AHL affiliate Abbotsford following his WHL season. In six regular season games with the Heat he scored 1 goal with 2 assists and was +5 with 2 penalty minutes. Abbotsford finished second in the West Division before losing to Grand Rapids in a first round series. Kulak played in all four games against the Griffins and had an even plus/minus with no points and 2 penalty minutes. He was among the scoring leaders amongst WHL defensemen in his third season with the Vancouver Giants, scoring 14 goals with 46 assists (both career highs), and was -8 with 51 penalty minutes. The Giants finished third in the B.C. Division and were swept by Portland in a first round playoff series. Kulak scored 1 goal with 2 assists and was an even plus/minus with 7 penalty minutes against the Winterhawks.
2014-15: Kulak made his NHL debut in the Flames’ final game of the season against Winnipeg after splitting his first pro season between the AHL and the ECHL. He had no points with 2 penalty minutes and was an even plus/minus in 19:31 minutes of ice time against the Jets. Kulak was with the Flames during the NHL playoffs but did not dress for any games. He began the year with the AHL’s Adirondack Flames and was subsequently loaned to the ECHL’s Colorado Eagles — shuttling between the two clubs. He scored 4 goals with 9 assists and was -2 with 27 penalty minutes in 26 AHL games. Kulak scored 9 goals with 21 assists and was +9 in 15 games for the Eagles.
Kulak is is an offensively-inclined defenseman who will not likely wow anyone with any one part of his game. He is a steady performer who plays a controlled, heady game but is still a work in progress in terms of his physical strength and positional play. Kulak is not a physical player but relies on good decision-making and playing the angles to do his job. Still developing in terms of being a defenseman at the pro level, he must continue to develop all areas of his game.
Kulak is among a group of defensemen vying for one of the bottom pairing slots for Calgary in 2015-16 and will likely begin the year with new AHL affiliate Stockton. Now in his second pro season, he will look to play a full-time role for the Thunder after splitting last season between the AHL and the ECHL's Colorado Eagles. Still just 21-years-old, Kulak's ability to read the play suggests he can eventually contribute at both ends of the ice at the NHL level.