It’s the last for Adam McCormick in the QMJHL.
Like many other overagers across the QMJHL, McCormick is trying to take their final season in Major Junior hockey all in stride.
The highly skilled two-way defenceman is leading the way in more ways than one for the upstart Acadie-Bathurst Titan who have taken an early stranglehold on top of the Maritimes Division.
What a ride it’s been for the Woodstock, New Brunswick product.
McCormick’s story is very well documented both on and off the ice.
McCormick has never given up on his dreams and it’s clear where he gained his resiliency, character and perspective from; his parents.
If anyone understands the importance of taking life and hockey one-step at a time it’s Adam McCormick.
The hard-nosed competitor and quiet leader has faced a tremendous amount of adversity on and off the ice throughout his time in the QMJHL.
Audrey McCormick, Adam’s mother was diagnosed with bronchiectasis, a rare incurable disease that targets the lungs in 2008.
By 2014, her condition worsened and she required a double lung transplant. Audrey underwent a successful transplant in 2017 and is now doing well.
“As everyone knows my mother and my family have been through quite a bit over the past few years and the majority of my childhood growing up, so this feels really good for everyone,” McCormick said in May after winning the Kevin Lowe Trophy for Best Defensive Defenceman in the QMJHL.
Saying a lot has changed since May would be an understatement for McCormick and the rest of the hockey world.
The former Cape Breton Eagles standout was traded to the rebuilding Titan at the QMJHL Draft in early June.
A new adventure and challenge confronted the veteran rearguard.
“It’s very special,” McCormick said of the Titan’s early success.
“I knew coming in that we were going to be young especially on the backend, but I think it’s just a mindset that we have to never give up and play as a team out there and it’s working,” he said proudly.
McCormick is arguably playing some of his best hockey of his career right now and looks very relaxed leading the surging Titan.
“It’s really special to be part of that,” McCormick said of providing a veteran presence on the Titan’s backend.
“I look back to my sixteen year old in Cape, I had Oli LeBlanc as a twenty year old helping me out.”
“If I can help out in anyway it definitely feels good.”
What does McCormick say on the ice or bench to calm the young D corps down?
“I just tell them mistakes are going to happen and when I was young they happened far more often than what’s been happening so far,” McCormick said.
“I just tell them to play their game out there, mistakes will happen, move the puck quick, do what you can.”
McCormick has been part of a lot of good teams during his time in Cape Breton. How does he rank the Titan’s young core group moving forward?
“We have a couple of great twenty year olds up front that have been doing their job on and off the ice supporting the guys like myself on the backend, but looking down the depth chart up front there are some young guys, but very skilled and they are working their butts off out there and it’s working.”
How welcoming have the Titan coaching staff and organization been so far?
“Greg (Leland) has done a great job with the D-corps.”
“Looking at his past with the Sea Dogs and who he coached back then, it definitely shows the type of coach he is and the knowledge he has for the game.”
“Greg has definitely given me some room out there,” McCormick said.
“He trusts me, and that definitely means a lot.”
What’s it been like playing in front of Chad Arsenault and Christian Sbaraglia?
“It’s one of best feelings as a defenceman, you’re more clear to make plays and if you make a mistake you know they are going to be there helping you out most of the time,” explained McCormick.
“They have both done a heck of job so far,” McCormick said proudly.
McCormick is trying to keep everything in perspective when it comes to his final ride in the QMJHL.
“It was obviously disappointing how the season ended last season.”
“When I got traded I was just hoping to get the season started because it was quite messed up back then.”
“There’s always something to be thankful for,” McCormick said.
“We are still playing hockey so that’s special.”
As for next season, McCormick is trying to stay in the moment and not look too far ahead.
“Obviously my goal is to play pro, but I’m taking things day by day,” confessed McCormick.
“All of that is long way off, my focus is just helping the team anyway I can,” stressed McCormick.
Adam McCormick is a perfect example of a player that has worked extremely hard, trusted the process while doing anything and everything to help his team throughout his career.
The ultimate team player and leader has never tried to change his identity or style of play.
Hard work, dedication and playing to your identity still means something in the game of hockey.
You see that is what’s going to make Adam McCormick’s final ride in Q so memorable.
McCormick can simply play his game, be a leader and embrace every single second of time he has remaining in the QMJHL.