Saturday, April 2, 2016

Viper Alumni Tambellini Considered Solid Prospect For Hartford Wolf Pack:

Here is an article from November I come across in the Hartford newspaper on former Vernon Vipers forward Adam Tambellini.

Tambellini is in his first professional season with the American Hockey League (AHL) Hartford Wolf Pack, after signing an entry-level contract with the New York Rangers on March 10th 2015. In 67 games this season, Tambellini has (15-goals-9-assists-24-points).

Tambellini spent last season with the Western Hockey League (WHL) Calgary Hitmen attended the New York Rangers 2014 Prospect Development Camp was one of twenty players reassigned from the Rangers Training Camp. The Rangers reassigned Tambellini to the Hitmen on September 24th 2014. Tambellini left the University of North Dakota in January 2014 for the Western Hockey League joining the Calgary Hitmen January 8th 2014 after being acquired in a trade with the Portland Winterhawks.

Tambellini played a season and a half in Vernon (2011-13) before being traded to Surrey on January 10th 2013 along with future considerations (Michael Roberts) for Mason Blacklock & future considerations (Jordan Klimek and Demico Hannoun). In 91 regular season games with the Vipers Tambellini collected (49-goals-46-assists-95-points). Tambellini was drafted 64th overall in the 3rd Round by the New York Rangers at the 2013 NHL Draft.

Adam Tambellini's Player Profile:

This was in the Hartford Courant Newspaper:

Adam Tambellini Considered Solid Prospect For Hartford Wolf Pack

By Paul Doyle Contact Reporter

November 5, 2015

HARTFORD — As Adam Tambellini began his professional hockey career in the New York Rangers organization, he didn't need to look far for advice.

His father, Steve, played nine seasons in the NHL and is the former general manager of the Edmonton Oilers. His brother, Jeff, is in his 10th professional season and is skating for the Syracuse Crunch of the American Hockey League.

Adam, 21, is a rookie forward for the Hartford Wolf Pack. A third-round draft pick in 2013, he is considered a solid prospect after scoring 47 goals in the junior Western Hockey League last year.

But the adjustment from juniors to the AHL is not easy, nor the lifestyle change when moving from western Canada to Connecticut. Tambellini, though, has a few sounding boards on speed dial.

"I definitely lean on my brother and my dad as much as possible, just to kind of ask questions and get their input on things as well," Tambellini said. "Those two have been really influential in my career so far."

Steve Tambellini, who began his career with the New York Islanders in 1979, ended his playing career six years before Adam was born in 1994. Jeff was 10 when Adam was born, so he was as much a hockey mentor as his father.

But the brothers never competed with or against each other, although they do skate and practice together in the summer. That changed this season, when the Wolf Pack played two games against the Crunch last month.

It was the first time the Tambellini brother played in the same game. Jeff Tambellini played at the University of Michigan before embarking on a professional career with the Los Angeles Kings. He spent time in the Islanders' organization, playing for the Bridgeport Sound Tigers, and spent the last four years in Europe.

As Adam forged his career, it seemed unlikely they would cross professional paths.

Adam had an assistant against Syracuse in a 5-2 win Oct 18 in Hartford and had two goals in a 4-3 win Oct. 23 in Syracuse.

"That was pretty cool to face him," Adam said. "We never really thought we could get that experience against each other, being so far apart in age. It was a cool experience to see him out there. Obviously, he was a big role model for me growing up. It was pretty cool. … Definitely a highlight, for sure."

Coming out of junior hockey, Adam (6 feet 3, 190 pounds) was briefed by his brother and father about the AHL. He knew he would be playing with and against older players, he knew travel could be a challenge and the game would be tighter.

So far, he is handling the transition. In 11 games, he has four goals and six points. He is tied for third on the team in scoring.

"The guys being older, a little bit stronger than what I was playing against last year," Tambellini said. "Coming from the Western League, it's a long ways out here. You're away from your friends and family. But it's been really good so far."

Tambellini has good size, but he anticipated the challenge of battling more physically mature players in the AHL. So he put in extra time building muscle in the offseason.

"There's not a lot of mismatches in this kind of league," Tambellini said. "That's something that you work toward in the summer. You try to put the work in there and hopefully it pays off. So far, it's OK."

As a high draft pick with an eye-opening resume, Tambellini is viewed a legitimate prospect. His every move on the ice in Hartford is being watched in New York — but the Rangers hierarchy and by fans.

Tambellini is not thinking about the next step nor about the pressure of rising through an organization that attracts so much attention.

"I think coming in here being my first year, you're just trying to get your feet wet and trying to get your foot in the door," Tambellini said. "Trying to play well and see how you adapt to the pro game. For myself, I don't really like to put a lot of pressure on myself. Just try to go out there and do what I can do and try to help this team win."

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