Seth Jones is eager to step up as a leader and get back to work with his teammates as the upcoming season approaches. With training camp just around the corner, BlueJackets.com got to catch up with him to see how his summer is going.
BlueJackets.com: What have you been up to this summer?
Jones: I've been in Dallas hanging out with my mom and my younger brother. For the most part, I've been working out and skating, kind of getting back into the groove right now, but it's been a great summer. I've golfed a little bit with my brother, so we try to do that in our free time.
BlueJackets.com: What are your summer workouts like?
Jones: They are high intensity. I'm actually doing the workouts that Nelson, our new trainer is doing. I feel really good, a lot of strength training, so I'm really happy.
BlueJackets.com: Are there any other guys on that team that you workout with?
Jones: No there's not, but I work out with my little brother.
BlueJackets.com: Is there anything in particular that you have been working on this summer?
Jones: Obviously, I want to be an overall better player. I think it's tough in the summer to work on things as you would in a game situation but just a harder shot, my one-timer, I have been working on the quite a bit. I always work on my skating so I do power skating every summer. That's something that is really important to me and is a key part of my game right now. Off the ice, I just need to develop as a person and try to take on more of a leadership role this year. We are a pretty young team, on defense too, so I'll try to take a step forward there.
BlueJackets.com: How big of an advantage is it to have playoff experience under your belt heading into the upcoming season?
Jones: It's a big advantage. We hated how it happened last year in the first round. We thought we played good enough to make that season a little longer but I think it's very good for our young guys. A lot of rookies last year and a lot of guys that played one year in the league didn't know what it was like. It's just a different atmosphere, different feeling. It's going to help us for the future, the more and more appearances in the playoffs and consecutive appearances, which is obviously what we hope to do. It's going to help develop everyone individually and make our team better. I think we need to earn more respect in this league and one year and a playoff appearance doesn't do that. I think we caught a lot of teams off guard, and I don't think we are going to catch as many teams off guard this season, so we have to be even better and on top of our game for sure.
BlueJackets.com: What are your thoughts on what the organization has done this offseason, with the draft, along with the acquirement of Panarin?
Jones: I think it is going to add a little bit more creativity offensively. We lost a great player in Brandon (Saad), but, at the same time, we are getting a very awesome player, a very exciting player to watch in Panarin. I think we are really happy with some of the moves we've made, and hopefully that makes the team better.