GLENDALE – The Coyotes' annual Prospect Development Camp is this week and General Manager Don Maloney is eager for it to get started.
"I can't wait," Maloney said. "That's going to be maybe the highlight of the summer for me because we do have so many interesting players… Everybody that we drafted is coming in… It's going to be fun to sort of take a look at all these guys… It will be a really interesting couple days to have them all here and get them together and give them a little taste of the desert."
Twenty-nine prospects have been invited to the camp, which officially began Monday as players arrived in Arizona for physical testing and a team dinner.
First-round draft picks Max Domi (2013), Brendan Perlini (2014) and Dylan Strome (2015) are among the participants. So is Anthony Duclair, whom the Coyotes acquired last March in the trade that sent Keith Yandle to the New York Rangers.
Unlike past camps, Coyotes Head Coach Dave Tippett and his staff will orchestrate the on-ice portions of the camp this time around.
|Dave Tippett. Photo by Norm Hall. |
"The biggest difference this year is less players," Tippett said. "In the past we've had 35 to 40-some players. This year we still have four goalies, but there are fewer skaters and there will be much more individual attention given to those skaters."
Like Maloney, Tippett is eager to see all nine of the 2015 draft picks on the ice, in person, for the first time, plus camp veterans Domi, Perlini and Christian Dvorak. He'll also be watching organization newcomers Duclair, Max Letunov and Matthias Plachta very closely.
"I'm very excited to see the players I haven't seen before and to check in with the players we know from past camps," Tippett said. "We have a lot of talented young players in the pipeline, but our next challenge is to get them NHL ready as quickly as possible."
The camp will feature three on-ice sessions at the Ice Den in Scottsdale on Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday. Tippett said fans can expect to see fewer scrimmages than in past years, and more skill development drills and on-ice fitness testing.
The camp also will include several off-the-ice team bonding events and a meeting with a nutritionist.
NOTE: Click HERE to view CAMP ROSTER