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Edit: Drafted 33rd overall by the Tampa Bay Lightning.
It was a bit of a perplexing year for Adam Erne and the Quebec Remparts. Loaded with talent and expected to challenge the Halifax Mooseheads for QMJHL supremacy before the season began, things didn’t go exactly as planned. Sure, the Mooseheads held up their end of the bargain, but Erne and the Remparts never seemed to live up to their potential, even with Mikhail Grigorenko playing most of the season both due to the NHL lockout, and being sent back to Junior from the Sabres. Rumors of conflict in the Remparts dressing room were rampant, especially after Erne, and teammate Anthony Duclair were announced as being suspended by the team for a game in late January. However the two draft eligibles never ended up serving that suspension, as Head Coach/GM Patrick Roy reconsidered and put them back in the lineup. The Remparts would end up finishing 5th in the QMJHL standings and losing in the second round of the playoffs.
Through all the controversy though, Erne was a consistent producer for the Remparts, putting up 28 goals and 72 points in 68 games. It was a good season for Erne, but may have fallen a little below what some expected when he was seen as a potential top 10 pick by some analysts.
A well travelled player Erne is a Connecticut native who has played hockey for teams in Connecticut, New Hampshire, Los Angeles, New Jersey, Indiana, and now Quebec City during his minor hockey and junior hockey days. He even billeted with Eric Comrie when he was just 13 and playing in Los Angeles. Erne has international experience playing for Team USA at the 2012 Ivan Hlinka tournament.
Right Wing Born — New Haven, CT Height 6.01 — Weight 205 — Shoots Left February Rank 14
Erne is a power forward in training who plays a very physical game. He loves to get in on the forecheck and throw big hits, the type that can really set the tone for his team. He just loves to win battles on the boards and to fight for position in front of the net. Erne is at his best when he drives the net and uses his soft hands to beat the goalie in close. He can do this by taking defenders wide off the rush, or in the cycle game by just fighting through checks and barreling his way to the crease. He drives the net effectively without the puck as well. Erne also has a good wrist shot and a quick release which he can also use to beat goaltenders. His vision and playmaking ability have vastly improved this season, and he has shown off his ability to set up teammates for good scoring chances.
Erne’s skating has really improved over time. When he entered the QMJHL, he needed a bit of work, but he’s clearly put in the time and effort necessary and is now a very good skater. His stride is long and powerful, which allows him to generate good top speed, but also gives him the balance and strength necessary to be strong on the puck and fight through checks to get to the dirty areas of the ice. Erne’s strong acceleration allows him to go wide on defenders and beat them before cutting to the net. His edgework and agility are decent as well.
Erne is already advanced in his defensive game and is reliable in his own zone. He brings the same strong physical play in the defensive zone as well as the offensive zone. Most times he plays his position extremely well, keeping his man to the outside and cutting off shooting and passing lanes. The only issue he can sometimes have is getting a little overzealous in his approach and looking for the big hit which will get him out of position in the defensive zone.
Enre’s style is comparable to Erik Cole. He plays the same strong physical game on the forecheck and loves to drive the net from the Right Wing, using his left handed shot to protect the puck as he does so. Erne’s potential is also similar to Cole’s career, where he can be an effective first line forward in his prime, and provide first line offence at the NHL level if he reaches his potential.