The scrimmage was good today. Our team didn't have the best start, but toward the end we got a feel for the puck and make some plays. I thought it was fun and overall I thought it was a good game. It was great to get out there and play after a long week of practice and battling. I had a pretty nice backhand goal toward the end of the game. I was going pretty fast around the net, gave up the puck to Chase Priskie and drove back to the net. He put one right in my wheelhouse and I put it in the back of the net. It was a good play from him. Overall, I thought I did pretty well. It was different getting into a game. We hadn't run plays since February or March. Towards the end, I started to get my wind. I made some plays, focused on getting my stick on the puck and being patient on the forecheck.
I know I have to keep working hard after this week. I want to build my brand and just make sure I'm working my tail off this offseason and season. I just want to be the best player I can be. When I go back to Providence (NCAA), I'm going to be the captain of my team. That's a big leadership role. I was captain last year but I know this year will be a little different. I'm excited for it and I think we have a really good team.
After I leave D.C., I am going back to school. All the freshman are coming in and some of the rest of the team are coming back. We are just going to work out, take some classes. It'll be fun since this will be my second time going back. It's fun to be with the guys at school because sometimes you get bored at home. I'll be there in July, then I get to go back home to north of Boston for August to enjoy some time with my family and friends. Then, I head back to school in late August.
I'm looking forward to making a run next season. Providence has a really good team. We had a tough first half last year, but a really good second half. A lot of those guys are coming back. We know how to compete and work hard and win tight games against good teams now - I think we are going to be really good. We have some older guys and some new guys who will be great for us. We are looking forward to getting into the Hockey East Conference.
It's great to see everyone after a full year and how everyone has improved. I made some new friends and it was good to see some other guys here. Overall, it was a great week.
Last night, we went bowling. We played two full games and after that we had the top four teams play each other. Whoever had the top score of those teams won. My teams scored 525 between four of us, so pretty high. The other teams were going and they didn't finish in time. So technically, it was a tie but we don't really know if they would have beaten us. We'll just say we were the winners.
We had a 6:30 a.m breakfast this morning. We came over to the rink and had another breakout session. This one was about habits. Coach Trotz had an example that if your buddies are going to the beach on the weekend make sure you get your workout in, then you can go have fun. Then we split up into teams. One team did an upper-body workout and one team did some yoga. The yoga felt nice. I think a lot of the guys were pretty sore so it was good to stretch out. We hopped on the ice and did another forward-defensemen split working on some skills. The second half we did some forechecking and tracking the puck. Now we just have meetings the rest of the day.
I'm looking forward to the upcoming season, I just want to be the best player I can be. Hopefully, I can get a contract with the Caps after next season. For my team, Providence, I want to make the tournament and win the Hockey East Conference. For myself, I set some goals last season and I met those goals so hopefully next year won't be all that different. I'm also really looking forward to the scrimmage tomorrow. It's been a fun week so far!
We worked the kid's clinic yesterday. I think there were about 100 squirts out there. We split up into two different ice surfaces. I ran the station where they weaved through a few cones and then took a shot. The kids seemed to enjoy it. There were a few other stations: monkey in the middle, three-on-three and a skating drill. It was awesome to meet some of them and see how big youth hockey is here in D.C.
We got to sleep in an extra hour this morning which was great. We had breakfast, then hopped over to the rink. We had a break-out session again today, just talking a little more about our plans, how to be a pro hockey player and how to plan out our career. Then we got into some more video - the forwards watched some line rushes and some neutral zone re-groups. After that we went on the ice and did a forward and defensemen split to start. We worked on some skills and catching and releasing pretty quick. We did that for about 15 minutes. Then, we did some more drills on systems. The second hour, we split into teams. We started out on the skill session first with Dwayne Blais and we did some one-on-one battles. We were going up and down the sheet. It was good there. After that we switched and Troy Mann came over. We did some neutral zone work, re-groups and line rushes.
I'm looking forward to putting it all together on Saturday for the scrimmage. We've been working hard this week on the systems, line rushes, breakouts and competing. I think it'll be fun to jump into a game. It'll be fun to show what we've been working on all week and improve ourselves. I've been working on competing all week and keeping it high energy. I've been coming into the rink happy and leaving happy everyday so that's what I've been working on all week.
We have the big event this afternoon: bowling. We drafted teams yesterday, my team is Chase Priske, Jimmy DeVito and Mark Simpson. Hopefully we can win it all. It's yet to be seen who the best bowler on our team is, I don't know if I'm the best. I've only done it a few times. We have a pretty big group, they all seem athletic. I would say my team has a 60 percent chance of winning tonight. The Canadians (Connor Hobbs and Colby Williams) are our biggest competition. We are looking forward to it.
We woke up pretty early this morning. We had breakfast at 6 a.m. and then we came over for a break-out session. Today, Olie Kolzig talked to us about how to lengthen your career and the type of person you want to be. Coach Trotz talked to us about three different types of players: pretender, business man and player. He described each one and told us we should be players because they love the game and they come to the rink ready to go every day. After that we went over to the track and had a 45-minute work out on the turf. That was pretty fun.
We came back to Kettler to have a meeting with the chef which was pretty interesting. He gave us a sheet on some recipes, maybe some of the guys will use it. Then we went on the ice. For the first hour we did on-ice testing like speed and other drills. Then the second hour we did small games. It was fun today. I think the boys were competing hard today and everyone seemed to be having fun out there. We had a blast today.
It's not too weird being in the same locker room as guys I competed against at school. Hockey is funny like that. You always compete and battle and get in each other's faces during the games. Off the ice you can be buddies so it's been good. I've been hanging out with all the guys, we've been talking and it's been a really fun time.
I think we have some down time until 5 p.m. but I should probably get cracking on some homework. I'm taking a writing summer class so maybe I'll get some work done today.
Arriving on Sunday was pretty easy. I only had an hour and fifteen minute flight from Boston. After I got in to the hotel one of my friends from school who has an internship on Capitol Hill picked me up and we grabbed some dinner. I got a good night's sleep before we got after it the next morning.
In the morning, we had breakfast and then we headed over to Kettler for a quick introduction and off-ice testing all the way up until lunch. This is my fifth development camp so it was cool to see the same faces this summer. We only get a week together but we always seem to have fun. It seems like we have a good group of guys here. I think the guys who are here every summer do a good job of welcoming the new guys and showing them the ropes.
We had an orientation Monday night where Eric Hoffberg and Mike Knuble spoke which was pretty cool. Eric talked about the mental toughness of the game. He comes in every year and it's awesome to hear. I think guys take a lot of stuff from him and work on their own game with it. He just talked about how to be your best and think your best. Mike Knuble was talking about having a brand, how you want to be seen, how you want to portray yourself and all the good qualities you want to portray.
We started on the ice on Tuesday with forwards and defensemen split. It was pretty good, we were working on more individual skills. It was good that we started with personal drills. I think some of the guys were pretty rusty, I hadn't skated since last Thursday so it's good to get a feel for the puck. We worked on our shots and our offensive progression. After that, we had a quick lift and a nutritional meeting and lunch. We hit the ice again for more team drills which was pretty fun. I got a lot of touches today so I'm pretty happy to be on the ice.
I'm excited for everyday this week. It's a new opportunity to show myself, be a good teammate and bring good energy to the rink. It's always excited to come to the rink.