Tough guy Gordie Dwyer accumulated more the 1200 penalty minutes during his 229 game career in the QMJHL and it was his intimidating presence on the ice that caught attention of the St. Louis Blues who drafted the left-winger in 1996. When he failed to come to terms with the Blues he re-entered the draft and was selected by the Montreal Canadiens in 1998.
Dwyer began his pro career in 1998 and split his time between Montreal's farm club in Fredricton and New Orleans of the ECHL. During his second season as a pro the Canadiens traded Dwyer to the Tampa Bay Lightning in exchange for defenseman Mike McBain. Dwyer spent some time with their IHL affiliate in Detroit and then made his NHL debut with the Lightning later that season.
Dwyer played 24 games for Tampa and showcased his pugilistic skills as well as his willingness to initiate the physical game with stiff body checks. Though he only managed one assist in his rookie NHL campaign, he did rack up 135 penalty minutes in the 24 contests he played.
The rugged winger bounced up and down between the NHL and the IHL in 2000-01, after serving a 23-game suspension which stemmed from an on ice incident during the pre-season.
The 2001-02 season saw more of the same for Dwyer. He spent 17 games in the AHL with the Springfield Falcons and then 26 more with the Lightning. Dwyer was able to match his career output in points by assisting on two goals and showed improved discipline by piling up just sixty minutes in penalties.
The New York Rangers acquired the Dalhousie, N.B native at the beginning of the 2002-03 season and went on to split the early part of his season with the New York and its AHL affiliate in Hartford before he was subsequently dealt back to the Montreal Canadiens who were in need of a physical presence along the boards. Dwyer went on to play parts of two seasons in the Montreal organization, spending the majority of his time with the AHL's Hamilton Bulldogs before being acquired by the Carolina Hurricanes in the summer of 2004.