Tuesday is the first full day for Blue Jackets prospects at this year’s development camp.
Just like Monday, the two groups took part in on-ice sessions in the OhioHealth Ice Haus led by the Lake Erie Monsters coaching staff, development coach Chris Clark and skating consultant Lee Harris. The drills aren’t unlike many you’ll see throughout the hockey season, but for the prospects, the on-ice portion of camp is a needed re-set as many haven’t yet skated since their seasons ended.
An emphasis for the Blue Jackets as an organization has been: when you come to camp – whether it’s development camp or training camp – you had better be prepared to skate. They want tempo, speed, and an attacking mentality, and it starts in these daily drills.
One guy without much of a break is Sonny Milano, who chose to come to development camp (he’s a bit of a rink rat) only two-ish weeks after the Monsters won a Calder Cup championship in Cleveland.
He’s been zipping around the rink over the past couple days, and whenever he’s got the puck, Milano is one of the more exciting guys to watch. It’s development camp, man, but you can’t help but watch the kid when he’s flying up the ice.
Off the ice, it’s been eventful, as well.
The prospects took part in a fun improv class led by Bill Sabo and Barbara Allen of Columbus Unscripted (which happens to be one of the more prominent improvisation performance groups in Ohio) on Monday afternoon, and it was full of laughs.
First, the prospects had to learn everyone’s names in five minutes. They then learned how to read the audience and “make it up on the spot,” before working on a short performance they’d take to Moler Elementary School later in the evening.
By all accounts, the prospects were a smash hit with the kids.
Other notes from today’s sessions:
- We’ll hear more from Oscar Dansk on BlueJackets.com later on, but he told reporters today that he’s returning to Rogle (Swedish Hockey League) on loan for a second season. Dansk, 22, played 36 games for Rogle in 2015-16, posting a 2.68 GAA and .911 save percentage.
- Pierre-Luc Dubois sat down for a 1-on-1 with Bob McElligott this morning, and we’ll have it on Jackets TV soon.
- The prospects’ annual trip to the Columbus Zoo & Aquarium is tonight (Tuesday). Make sure you follow along on social media: Twitter, Instagram, Snapchat.
- The hockey gear of Finnish defensemen Veeti Vainio and Markus Nutivaara arrived in Columbus in time for today’s practices. Both players were on the ice for their first sessions of the week.
- One guy I’ve been watching closely this week is big center Kevin Stenlund, the Blue Jackets’ second round pick a year ago. He’s up to 6-foot-4 and around 200 lbs., and man, can he ever snap the puck. He’s headed back to HV71 in Sweden for his fifth season in the program, but first full year with the senior club.