Kevin SchultzYet another of the Islanders defensive prospects currently in the pipeline is Adam Pelech, drafted in the third round of the 2012 draft. He’s performed well and is high on the radar of Hockey Canada. Pelech was offered an invite to Canada’s World Junior Camp over the summer but had to withdraw due to a wrist injury.
Healed up and ready to go, Pelech is leading his junior team on a surprising run.
Pelech plays for Erie of the OHL, a team that’s had a bad run the last couple of years; Erie had only 29 combined wins in the previous two seasons. This year they’re off to an excellent start, first in their division with already 16 wins in 20 games.
A lot of that is due to having super kid Connor McDavid. McDavid is already getting Crosby-like reviews at 16-years old, being called the ‘LeBron James of Hockey’ and putting up 34 points in 19 games this year.
But Pelech is also having a good year as a four-year veteran of the surging Otters. He’s got 15 points and a +15 rating in 20 games thus far and is a veteran leader on Erie, which has seen some ups and downs during his tenure.
Hockey’s Future caught up with Pelech recently, and discussed the increased offensive output that now puts him eighth in the OHL among defensemen.
“It’s definitely something I wanted to add,” Pelech said. “It’s something that’s come with extra experience along with the fact that we’re having team success this year. I’m just trying to make the smart plays and it’s working.”
The Islanders hold Pelech’s rights for the rest of this year and have to make a decision as to whether to offer him an entry level contract by June 1, 2014.