2009-10: Adam Tambellini played for the South Side Athletic Club Bulldogs minor midget AAA team in Edmonton. In 34 games he scored 27 goals with 24 assists and had 20 penalty minutes. The Bulldogs finished first in the North Division and in six playoff games Tambellini scored 6 goals with 4 assists and had 10 penalty minutes.
2010-11: Tambellini made his junior hockey debut, playing for the Albert Junior Hockey League’s Sherwood Park Crusaders ,and was the second-leading scorer for the SSAC Boston Pizza Athletics in the Alberta Midget Hockey League. He scored 1 goal in three games with the Crusaders. Tambellini scored 22 goals with 25 assists in 33 games for the Athletics and had 4 goals with 2 assists in five playoff games as the first place Athletics were upset by the Sherwood Park Kings.
2011-12: Tambellini skated for the BCHL’s Vernon Vipers in his first season of junior hockey and committed to playing college hockey at North Dakota in 2012-13. He was the third-leading scorer for the Vipers, finishing the year with 27 goals and 29 assists in 55 games with 28 penalty minutes. The Vipers missed the BCHL playoffs; finishing fifth in the Interior Division.
2012-13: Tambellini finished the season with BCHL champion Surrey after being obtained in January in a trade deadline deal with Vernon. He was the Vipers’ leading scorer at the time of the trade – scoring 22 goals with 17 assists in 36 games – and had 14 goals and 13 assists in 16 regular season games with Surrey. He led the Eagles with 10 goals in 17 playoff games and had 8 assists with 6 penalty minutes. Surrey beat the defending champion Penticton Vees in six games in the BCHL finals. Ranked 62nd amongst North American skaters in Central Scouting’s mid-term rankings, Tambellini was ranked 42nd in the final rankings prior to the 2013 NHL Draft.
2013-14: Tambellini skated in 16 games for the University of North Dakota as a freshman before leaving school in January to skate for the WHL’s Calgary Hitmen. He scored 2 goals with 2 assists and was -5 with 31 penalty minutes with the Fighting Sioux. Tambellini scored 17 goals with 22 assists and was -3 with 10 penalty minutes in 31 WHL regular season games. The Hitmen finished first in the Central Division before being upset by Kootenay in a first-round playoff series. Tambellini scored 5 goals with 4 assists and was +5 with 2 penalty minutes in the six-game series.
2014-15: Tambellini led the WHL’s Calgary Hitmen in scoring as a 20-year-old as the Hitmen were again one of the WHL’s top teams. He scored 47 goals with 39 assists and was +43 with 30 penalty minutes in 71 regular season games. Calgary finished first in the Central Division and reached the Eastern Conference finals against Brandon. Tambellini scored 13 goals with 13 assists and was +1 with 10 penalty minutes in 16 playoff games. He signed a three-year entry-level contract with the New York Rangers in March 2015.
Tambellini has had a big frame since he was drafted, but particularly over the last season has filled out well and improved in all areas of his game. He has the skating ability, puck tenacity and vision to become a top-six player in the NHL.
Tambellini will begin his professional career in Hartford this fall, after an impressive sophomore season with the Calgary Hitmen (86 points in 71 regular season games; 26 points in 16 postseason contests). Although expected to start as a center with the Wolf Pack, he could also play on the wing at the professional level, as he is a goal scorer and has the ability to go to the front of the net.