Your source for behind-the-scenes New York Islanders hockey news and information.
The third group on the ice today:
Forwards: Robin Figren, Pascal Morency, Jesse Joensuu, Matt Martin, Tony Romano, Joel Rechlicz, Casey Cizikas, Justin DiBenedetto, Tyler Haskins, Bobby Hughes
Defenseman: Calvin DeHaan, Jyri Niemi, Anton Klementyev, Jan Piskacek, Mark Katic
Goalies: Mikko Koskinen, Kevin Poulin
Yes, DeHaan skated twice today, presumably because the Isles were missing d-man Brett Westgarth, who suffered a minor ankle injury before coming to camp. He received treatment today and completed his off-ice workouts today and Scott Gordon said he hopes Westgarth will be ready to play Tuesday.
Speaking of Gordon, here's a couple snippets on his first day of training camp, now with a year of NHL experience under his belt.
"It's a lot less stopping this year. Everyone that played for Bridgeport or in New York has familiarity with how he play and saying that, just knowing everyone's names and having a name to go with a face makes it a little easier."
Gordon has had to change his approach to camp this year, shortening it a bit because of a compressed schedule and hectic travel itinerary. He has set it up so the teams that play the next two days (Monday's Hockeyville game in Terrace, BC and Tuesday's Rookie game in Prince Albert) will play together, after which the lines will be re-sorted to prepare for the exhibition game in Edmonton Wednesday.
"For me this year it was a little bit smoother because we cut it down and allowed guys to get their feet under them," Gordon said. "The biggest thing is we want to get the work ethic to where it needs to be for the season and we need to build that gradually."
"Overall I thought the guys' effort was good. The timing might have been a little off, passes may have been a little off, but overall I was happy with the effort."
Gordon was also asked about his first impressions of Islanders first overall pick John Tavares.
"I'm glad he was able to skate today because two days ago he was in bed sick and it was good to be able to see he could get out there. No question that below the top of the circle he's got a gift," Gordon said. "The one thing I've seen from him is he's a quick study, he wants to get better and that's good for us."
At the end of practice for two of the groups, Gordon and Co. pulled in both nets about 15 feet and had the guys skate laps for 5-10 minutes for conditioning. The group that plays tomorrow was exempt from the drill. Also, just a couple of quick, minor observations: Jon Sim really busted his tail with the first group this morning and I thought Richard Park looked really sharp overall with his skating and conditioning.
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