This week, the Tampa Bay Lightning will be focusing on another intriguing prospect with ties to the Québec Major Junior Hockey League: Adam Erne.
The Lightning selected Erne in the second round, 33rd overall, at the 2013 NHL Entry Draft. He is seen as a budding power forward with soft hands and good skill, is not afraid to make hits and get to the dirty areas of the ice. When asked to describe Erne’s play, Québec Remparts head coach and general manager Philippe Boucher said: “He’s a big truck…he throws some big hits.”
Erne has spent his junior career with the Remparts of the QMJHL. Prior to this season, he has put on an offensive show, scoring 77 goals, 189 points in 180 games. He also tallied 164 PIM over that span.
Coming in to the season later than the rest of his teammates due to Lightning training camp, Erne has picked up right where he left off last year. Through the first 11 games of the season he has scored 10 goals and 18 points.
This past week, Erne was thrust into the spotlight again as he put up some gaudy numbers in recent games. On Sunday, October 19, Erne recorded a hat trick and added an assist as the Remparts beat the Chicoutimi Sagueneens 7-2. Erne scored the game-winner in the contest. Just a few days later, on Friday, Erne recorded another hat trick that also included the overtime game-winner against the Acadie-Bathrust Titan.
When asked if he was surprised of Erne’s back-to-back hat tricks, Boucher said no.
“He needs to be dominant, he wants to be dominant…we had lost to Chicoutimi earlier in the year, and we had not been playing well on the road, so Adam took it upon himself to change that,” Boucher said.
Boucher also pointed out that Erne has an increased sense of leadership as he is one of the assistant captains on a captain-less Remparts team.
With the 2015 Memorial Cup being held in Québec City, there are expectations for the Remparts to ice a strong squad as the home team. Boucher said Erne will be one of the key elements of that team moving forward.