BROSSARD -- In today's notebook: Gomez is ready for action, Gionta on moving forward, and Cole bids farewell to Mike Modano.
: While he may have spent the first week of training camp healing a lower-body injury, Scott Gomez
is finally ready to see some action during the weekend’s string of match-ups. Gomez arrived at camp in top form after a summer of grueling workouts.
“I don’t think you get to play in the NHL for very long if you don’t work out. It wasn’t like I just found out what a weight was and decided to lift it,” kidded Gomez when asked if he had kept in shape over the offseason. “I might have changed some things up a little bit when it comes to my training this year, but at this level, keeping in shape is a year round job.
“I didn’t spend that much time at home this summer and just took the time to kind of focus and regroup and I’m ready to go,” he added. “My mind’s clear, I’m ready to change things up with my approach and I just want to get out there and have fun again.”
: After a week of training camp, Gomez was finally reunited at practice with teammate and longtime friend Brian Gionta
. When asked about what fans can expect from Gomez in 2011-12, the Canadiens captain was nothing but optimistic.
“He said it himself, last season is last season. It’s in the past. He’s coming in now with a new approach and a new attitude. Every time you kick off a new season it’s a positive thing because you’ve had the time to clear your mind over the summer and come back with a new focus – and that’s exactly what he did,” assured Gionta. “He looks like he’s in great shape and anxious to start the season.”The compatriot:
After 21 seasons in the NHL, Mike Modano, the all-time point leader among American-born players, is hanging up his skates. Modano leaves a legacy of great memories behind, not just for fans, but for his former teammates as well – Erik Cole
being one of them.
“He was really the last of a great group of guys that played together through the '90s. Being a little younger then, it was great for me to get to be around guys like him, [Doug] Weight, [Keith] Tkachuk, [Bill] Guerin, and [Derian] Hatcher, and see how they handled themselves and the kind of camaraderie that existed there,” mentioned Cole who roomed with Modano during the 2006 Olympic games in Turin. “If he really wanted to, I’m sure he could probably keep playing. He’s just that kind of guy. But he’s made his decision and I wish him the best of luck in the future.”Justin Fragapane is a writer for canadiens.com.SEE ALSOFirst impressions Recovered and ready First time's a charm