With the playoff appearance extending our season some, we haven't spent much time on the NHL Draft. But we're about to.
Upcoming will be various profiles as well as opportunities for the prospect/draft-watching readers to weigh in. You probably will want to skim NHL.com's blog from the draft combine this week, too. The combine is always a surreal exercise of applying hockey eugenics to teenagers.
Anyway, on to our first profile...
Adam Erne is an American New Englander playing in Quebec. After originally pledging to Boston University, he worked his junior hockey trajectory to play for Patrick Roy in the QMJHL, where he scored 28 goals each of the last two seasons and increased to above a point per game in 2012-13. He's played in L.A., Indiana and Quebec, so adjusting is not a problem.
By profile, he's a scoring winger who can skate, shoot and doesn't shy from physical contact. As you'll see below, his rankings make you think he could go anywhere from several picks before to several picks after the Islanders pick at 15.
He's a lefty shot who has played either wing. His size (6'1", 195 lbs.) is hardly overwhelming, but he uses it in a "power forward" kind of way. In his own words:
"I'm going to give you everything I got," he said. "That's the game I play. I'm physical, and whatever I'm asked to do, I can do it. I've played in so many different roles. In the USHL I was playing on the third and fourth lines, and now I'm on the first and second lines. I know how to play in every situation."
- The Hockey News: 13
- The Scouting Report (March): 11
- Central Scouting (N.A. skaters): 26
- ISS: Not in top 30
- Hockey Prospectus: 18
Samplings of what others are saying (these are always partial excerpts):
The Connecticut native has a quick release and heavy shot which should translate into at least 20-goal potential at the NHL level. Active in all 3 zones, he plays a pro style game which is another positive.
Some scouts think he needs to do more off the ice. "He's an intriguing player because I don' think he's figured out the conditioning part of the game yet," one scout said. "But even with that, he's a really good player."
Trent Klatt, Islanders Player Development:
A power forward by nature, this kid is more than willing to drive the net with wide lane speed. Erne is fearless crashing the net. While he’s better-known for scoring goals, he has the ability to make plays too.
Hockey Prospectus (Corey Pronman):
Erne features the ideal power forward style that NHL teams love, as his high-end north/south game is coupled with good skill. His best attribute is his skating; he frequently bursts through the neutral zone, drawing penalties, creating chances, and downright embarrassing defensemen with his speed and acceleration.
The conditioning point was an interesting one: A sign of untapped potential, or the kind of flaw that typically scares the Islanders away? The Islanders' quest for a scoring "power forward" continues (as it does for all teams), but they've had guys who aren't exactly big but try to play that way at lower levels.
Seen him? Like him? Don't? Have your say below.