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The View from the Ice: Competition and comradery at camp

by Beau Starrett, with Bria Davis / Chicago Blackhawks
Chase Agnello-Dean / Chicago Blackhawks

Throughout the week, 2014 draft pick Beau Starrett will be blogging for about his experiences during his first Blackhawks Prospect Camp.

This morning we woke up early and got started with the routine of the day. It’s been a pretty similar schedule for the past few days, but consistency is nice. We got a pregame skate in before the scrimmage to warm us up and get the legs going. About 30 minutes before the game, we were able to rest up for a bit.

Today’s scrimmage was more intense, and the pace was high throughout the entire game. The coaches started me out at center today even though I played left wing yesterday. Switching my position gave them a chance to see my versatility and how I work in all aspects of the game. I wasn’t worried about the switch at all because playing center is what I’m comfortable with. I played center for the duration of last year when I was with the South Shore Kings in the USPHL.

Even though I was comfortable playing center, there were aspects of the game that were difficult. We had a kid leave camp early today, so that didn’t help my team out. The other team also did a really good job offensively, which made us have to work pretty hard. Unfortunately, we weren’t able to come away with the win.

There were also some moments in the scrimmage today when I got a little worked up in the heat of the moment. At the end of the first period, (defenseman) Michael Paliotta and I got into it a bit. Once that puck drops, you can kind of feel the mean streak coming over you, and it’s just a different mindset when the game is going.

Off the ice it’s a different story, though. All of these kids are good guys, and when we aren’t on the ice everyone gets along great. I’ve been spending quite a bit of time with all of the guys so getting along is important. I’ve met a lot of the rookies and other recent draft picks. We’ve been chatting and getting to know about one another’s background, and where everyone comes from. It’s interesting because I’m from Boston and there are a lot of guys here from the west coast, Canada and European countries.

Aside from the new people I’ve met, I’m still spending some time with Chris Calnan. He’s really easy to get to know and it also helps that I sit right next to him in the locker room.

After the scrimmage we did some off-ice training, which consists mostly of strengthening exercises. We use the kettle bells, the medicine balls and other equipment. Legs are a big deal; this conditioning is great for me, as it’s getting me prepared for the upcoming season.

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