Bruce Boudreau talked a bit this week with FoxSportsWest.com's Jon Rosen on a number of topics regarding the upcoming season. Rosen pointed out that Boudreau's teams have averaged 106.7 points per 82 games the last five seasons, a pace bested by only San Jose Sharks coach Todd McLellan (107.8) and Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma (107.4) among current NHL coaches.
A few snippets from Boudreau:
On the battles at the forward positions in training camp
"I did get the sense that there's going to be a lot of people pushing for jobs. You throw in [Kyle] Palmieri and Peter Holland into that mix, and even guys like Patrick Maroon . . . those guys all had really good years. [Brandon] McMillan in Syracuse. There are guys that are going to be pushing other guys for a job. Competition makes players play better. I think with our depth and the minor leagues from last year, I think it'll be a real bonus, and it'll show well in camp this year. I was just putting down lines for camp, and we're pretty deep on all the training camp teams.
On young players stepping up and contributing
"I think that's what you want through the organization, leadership, that the young guys coming up are going to be seeing that the other guys not only got a chance to play, or we gave them a chance to play, but that they're pushing to stay here. That they'll know that there's opportunities for them. When you give them the carrot, usually they respond to that pretty well."
On the defense
"We're bigger and stronger back there, and Toni Lydman should be healthy this year. He wasn't healthy at all last year. So I think that's a big plus. And Cam Fowler is another year older and another year with experience under his belt. I just think with the addition of Souray and Allen, we're a bigger, stronger team. The elite teams – most every NHL team now – their forwards are getting bigger and bigger, and you need some of those big, strong guys to be able to move them in front of the net. I think we'll have that capability this year, more than we did in the past."
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