Shuffling off from Buffalo

John Browne
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Kilbride native headed back to AHL’s Rochester Americans

Following a brief stint in the NHL, the Buffalo Sabres sent forward Luke Adam to the American Hockey League’s Rochester Americans on Wednesday. Adam, who played four games with the Sabres, is looking forward to rejoining his teammate for the Americans’ playoff run. — Photo by Dan Hickling/Special to the Telegram

Luke Adam says he wasn’t really that disappointed to be sent back to the AHL’s Rochester Americans Wednesday after a brief stint with the Buffalo Sabres.

Adam recorded one goal in four games and was scratched in three others with the NHL club.

“I want to play in the NHL, but we’ve (Rochester) got a big weekend ahead of ourselves as we try to make the playoffs and I’m looking forward to helping them,” he said.

“These are the guys I’ve been playing with all year,” he said of his Rochester teammates. “We’ve got a great group of guys here and I think we can turn some heads in the playoffs.”

The Americans are currently in sixth place in the Western Conference, one point ahead of the Oklahoma City Barons and two up on the Milwaukee Admirals and Rockford IceHogs. The top eight teams make the playoffs.

Adam said being sent down wasn’t a surprise.

“I knew I was coming back (from Buffalo) some time,” he said.

Interim Sabres coach Ron Rolston told the Buffalo News Adam has “made improvements in some areas and other areas he’s got to do a better job in order to be here on a consistent basis.”

Adam says the consistency Rolston is referring to doesn’t have anything to do with him putting up points.

“The consistency the coach is talking about is my work ethic, winning puck battles and being good on the walls… the small things, not getting a certain amount of points in a game,” he said. “I don’t think I’ve had any setback in any area of my game.”

“I’d love to take more advantage of the opportunities I’ve been given. That’s something I’m definitely working on.”

However, at this point in his young career, Adam insists he’s not frustrated with the up and down between the AHL and the NHL.

“At the end of the day,” he said, “there are kids who come out of college to play their first pro season at 24 or 25. I’ve got three pro seasons under my belt now and I feel I’ve become a better player each year.

“I’m still working on becoming a full-time NHL player, but I feel like my overall game is rounding out. Hopefully, with a lot of hard work in the offseason I’ll get an opportunity in training camp and go from there.”

Adam says he was playing what he thought was “really good hockey” leading up to his recall a few weeks ago.

Selected by the Sabres in the second round of the 2008 NHL Entry Draft, Adam played in 19 games with the Sabres in the 2010-11 season and followed that up by playing in 52 games the following season scoring 10 goals with 10 assists.

He played in 27 games with the Rochester Americans in the 2011-12 campaign and, but for the short call-up, the 6-2, 203-pound centre, who has also skated on the wing, played the entire 2012-13 season in the AHL where he has scored 14 goals and added 18 assists in 64 games.

Adam’s three-year contract with the Sabres is up after this season and the 22-year-old from Kilbride, who turns 23 in June, said he’s “comfortable” in the Buffalo Sabres organization.

“I’m going to finish as hard as I can and try to help the Rochester Americans go far in the playoffs and the other (contract) stuff will be looked at in the summer,” he said.

Organizations: NHL, Milwaukee Admirals, Buffalo News Adam Buffalo Sabres organization

Geographic location: Rochester

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