Mark
Dubreuil
January 31, 2022

The Pipeline: A conversation with Adam Ingram

Adam Ingram wasn’t about to miss another season of hockey, so he opted to go play in the USHL.

It has paid off in a big way. 

“The main reason I would say is I just wasn’t sure what was going to happen with COVID in Canada and not having a season last year, I couldn’t afford to not have another season this year, especially it being my first year eligible for the draft.,” Ingram told Guy Flaming on The Pipeline Show. “So, I decided to try and go to the USHL. I got drafted in the 11th round by Youngstown and came out to their camp in June and I made their team.

“It worked out pretty well.”

Safe to say.

The 6-foot-2, 174-pound forward leads the Youngstown Phantoms with 38 points (16 goals, 22 assists) in 30 games. 

Ingram is No. 59 in FCHockey’s Midterm ranking for the 2022 NHL Draft, and is slotted 14th among North American skaters on NHL Central Scouting’s midterm list. 

Despite his strong start to the season and draft attention buzzing around the player, Ingram isn’t worried about that.

“No, I don’t really think about it,” he said. “I just try to focus on working on myself and getting better every day. Sometimes I’ll take a glance at them and I’ll see where I’m at or some of my friends will send it to me. I’ll definitely use that as motivation. That’s my take on it.”

Guy Flaming: Central Scouting comes out and you’re ranked very high for them. You’re on the draft radar, obviously, and have been all season long. That’s gotta be flattering when you hear about that. What was your feeling when you first saw that?

Adam Ingram: Yeah, actually I got a text from one of my buddy’s and he said go check out the Central Scouting and I did. It’s pretty exciting obviously.

Guy Flaming: For yourself, tell me about the year for you. You’ve got 36 points. It’s your rookie season in the league. So, what kind of expectations did you have? Is this way better than you thought it would be going for yourself?

Adam Ingram: Yeah, I wasn’t really sure what to expect coming into the season, but I scored a goal in the first game and had a lot of shots on net. I felt pretty confident after that first game and I just kind of continued with that confidence throughout the year. I’ve worked my way up and it’s been pretty good so far. I’m hoping to continue that as we move along.

Guy Flaming: Has your role changed since you first arrived? I don’t know where you fit into the lineup on opening night, but I imagine you’re a top line guy now.

Adam Ingram: I started the year probably more in the bottom of the lineup. And now I’m playing a lot more than I was the first night.

Guy Flaming: Your season is going really well and your role has changed. Now you’re playing further up the depth chart, but can you put your finger on why you’re having this much success? Most guys will credit their linemates and stuff, but there’s a big gap between you and everybody else on the team when it comes to scoring. Is it opportunity, obviously the puck is bouncing in for you too?

Adam Ingram: The coaches have given me a great opportunity. I am going to give my linemates the credit that they’ve been really good linemates throughout this whole year. So a shout out to Jaden Grant and Kyle Bettens for that. We’ve connected since we started playing together. They’ve definitely helped when we’re on the ice. 

Guy Flaming: Where did you grow up? Where are you from?

Adam Ingram: I’m from West St-Paul, Manitoba. That’s just inside the perimeter of Winnipeg, but it’s considered outside the city. I grew up there. I played hockey there until I was 16, and then I played in the MJHL for Selkirk Steelers last year. I’m here in Youngstown now.

Guy Flaming: Adam, who got you into hockey and do you remember how old you were when you first started playing?

Adam Ingram: Yeah, my dad would have gotten me into hockey when I was probably three. 

Guy Flaming: Classic outdoor rink in the backyard kind of story? I don’t imagine you can go out and skate on the Red River very often, or can you in the winter?

Adam Ingram: Down by the Forks in downtown Winnipeg you can go on the river, but yeah backyard rink. We’ve had one for probably eight years now. Still made one this year actually, hoping I was home for a little bit longer. 

Guy Flaming: The decision to go south and play in the USHL this year, what led you to that?

Adam Ingram: The main reason I would say is I just wasn’t sure what was going to happen with COVID in Canada and not having a season last year, I couldn’t afford to not have another season this year, especially it being my first year eligible for the draft. So, I decided to try and go to the USHL. I got drafted in the 11th round by Youngstown and came out to their camp in June and I made their team. It worked out pretty well.

Guy Flaming: I know you’re destined to go to St. Cloud, but have you always been a college guy, or is that kinda the way it sort of developed for you here in the last couple of years?

Adam Ingram: I was a late grower, so it’s helpful for me. It gives me some more time. And I thought about the WHL, but I didn’t think it was right for me. Education is something I’d like to have. It’s good to get an education while you’re playing hockey, so that’s kind of my reasoning.

Guy Flaming: Why St. Cloud State? 

Adam Ingram: It’s one of the closer schools to home and it’s in the best division of college hockey, the NCHC. I feel they built a relationship with me and they’ve talked to me for seven, eight months before I committed there. I just felt really comfortable picking there. They have an outstanding coaching staff and great facilities. I’m pretty thrilled with my decision. 

Guy Flaming: Is the NHL Draft on your mind? Over the course of the season do you spend much time thinking about the draft? 

Adam Ingram: No, I don’t really think about it. I just try to focus on working on myself and getting better every day. Sometimes I’ll take a glance at them and I’ll see where I’m at or some of my friends will send it to me. I’ll definitely use that as motivation. That’s my take on it.

Guy Flaming: I mentioned the 36 points in 27 games. Stats don’t always tell the whole  story though, so if somebody asked you to describe yourself as a player, what would you tell them?

Adam Ingram: I’d say I’m a tall center/left wing that’s good off the rush and good in the offensive zone. Has a good shot and has good hockey sense. 

Guy Flaming: Is there an area of your game that you’re focused on the most right now to try to improve on before you can get to the collegiate level?

Adam Ingram: Yeah, I’m focused on putting on weight and getting stronger. 

This interview has been edited and condensed for clarity.


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