If you score a hat trick in a scrimmage without fans in attendance, can you really celebrate it?
That was the question Sammy Blais was faced with Wednesday after potting his third goal in a three-period scrimmage with a running clock - the second such scrimmage of training camp.
After scoring an easy tap-in on a 2-on-1 to complete the hat trick, Blais skated away nonchalantly with barely a smile.
"There were not many people in the stands, so it was fine," Blais said, brushing off questions about whether he missed hats being chucked onto the ice.
For Blais, this camp has been all business. After missing a good chunk of last season with an injury, the 24-year-old has been eager to show he's healthy and ready to go.
And if you ask around, that's exactly what he's done.
Video: Blais scores hat trick in training camp scrimmage
"(He has) a ton of skill as we see every day in practice and in the games, a big body who is hard to move off the puck and a guy that is a lot of fun to play with," said Tyler Bozak, who has skated on a line with Blais and Robert Thomas in camp. "He creates a lot of plays from one-on-ones, which is not an easy thing to do. He can beat a lot of defenders one-on-one and can still make good plays after that."
"I thought he was tremendous, one of our better players in camp [last September]," Blues Head Coach Craig Berube said of Blais. "He started off the season really well and got hurt, it was unfortunate. He's back to that level again. He looks really good out there for me, competing, his hands look really good. He's a competitive guy. Blaiser's actually really good at getting pucks off the walls and he's got really good hands in tight. He's got a good shot, too, so he has the ability to beat a goalie with his shot."
"I feel really good," Blais said during a virtual press conference with the media. "I missed a lot of time last year and I feel like I was last year at training camp - I feel confident out there. Playing with 'Tommer' and 'Bozie' in camp, it's been good. We have some good chemistry and I'm feeling good, just trying to get ready for playoffs. It's going to be a tough ride in Edmonton, but I think the boys are ready."
Video: Blais, Bozak, Berube after camp scrimmage