2009-10: Justin Hache appeared in 16 games for the Miramichi Rivermen in the New Brunswick/PEI Major Midget Hockey League and skated for Canada Atlantic at the 2010 U17 World Hockey Challenge. Hache scored 4 goals with 10 assists and had 23 penalty minutes playing for the first-place Rivermen. He played in five games for Canada Atlantic, which finished seventh in the 10-team event, and was scoreless with no penalty minutes. Hache was selected by Shawinigan in the first round (eighth overall) of the 2010 QMJHL Entry Draft.
2010-11: Hache skated in 37 of 68 games in his first QMJHL season with Shawinigan and played for Canada Atlantic in the 2011 World Hockey Challenge. The second youngest player on the Cataractes’ roster, he scored 3 goals with 12 assists and was plus-nine with 17 penalty minutes. Shawinigan finished fourth in the West Division and advanced to the second round of the playoffs. Hache played in all 10 playoff games and was plus-two with 2 assists and 4 penalty minutes. Hache scored one goal (a power play tally) in five games for Canada Atlantic at the WHC. Canada Atlantic defeated Canada West in the fifth place game.
2011-12: Hache played 60 games for the Memorial Cup-champion Cataractes in his second season. On a team with several high profile prospects, he scored 2 goals with 16 assists and was plus-27 with 46 penalty minutes. Shawinigan finished first in the East Division but lost to Chicoutimi in a seven-game, second round playoff series. Shawinigan hosted the Memorial Cup and defeated the London Knights, 2-1, in overtime in the championship game. In six Memorial Cup games Hache was plus-1 with 12 penalty minutes. Not among the 210 North American skaters identified as prospects in Central Scouting’s final rankings prior to the 2012 NHL Draft, he was selected by Phoenix in the seventh round (208th overall).
2012-13: Hache went from Shawinigan to Cape Breton in June 2013 to complete a January trade and was one of three players to play in all 68 games for the last-place Screaming Eagles in his third QMJHL season. He was Cape Breton’s fourth-leading scorer with 7 goals and 26 assists and his 33 points led all Cape Breton defensemen. The Screaming Eagles had the league’s worst record, winning 14 games, and Hache was -48 with 61 penalty minutes.
2013-14: Hache made his pro hockey debut with Phoenix AHL affiliate Portland following his QMJHL season with Cape Breton and signed a three-year entry-level contract with the Coyotes in April 2014. He was -3 with no points and 2 penalty minutes in six games for the Pirates. Hache scored 5 goals with 41 assists and was +15 with 53 penalty minutes in 57 games for the Screaming Eagles, earning the QMJHL’s Kevin Lowe Trophy. Cape Breton finished second in the Maritimes Division and was swept by Gatineau in a first-round playoff series. Hache had 1 assist and was -5 with no penalties in three playoff games.
2014-15: Hache skated for the AHL’s Portland Pirates in his first pro season. Experience the struggles not uncommon for a 20-year-old making the jump from junior hockey, he was -3 with 6 assists and 18 penalty minutes in 60 games for Portland. The Pirates finished fourth in the Atlantic Division, falling to eventual Calder Cup champion Manchester in a first-round playoff series. Hache did not play in any playoff games.
Hache is a physical presence on the back line and is not afraid to get his nose dirty as he takes care of business in his own end first. He can make a good first pass out of the zone. After a nondescript first pro season in 2014-15 he is a work in progress in terms of developing his offensive talents and getting bigger and stronger.
Hache will attend his third training camp with Arizona before likely being assigned to new AHL affiliate Springfield to start the 2014-16. Entering his second pro season, he will look to have a bigger role for the Falcons this year. Long-term he projects as a solid, lower pairing defenseman. He appears to be a few years away from reaching that potential.