Flyers head coach Peter Laviolette returned to the ice with his dry-erase board and whistle a little sooner than expected on Thursday.
“It was good,” said Laviolette. “There’s a lot of kids out there that want to play in the National Hockey League someday and to go out there and have some fun with them for a day, I think it’s a good thing.”
What Laviolette is referring to isn’t being out on the ice with his crop of players ready to battle it out in training camp, rather his time spent on Thursday as an on-ice instructor at the 2010 Flyers Ice Hockey School currently running out of the Virtua
Center Flyers Skatezone
in Voorhees, N.J. this week.
|Laviolette runs through some drills with the Flyers Ice Hockey School kids. (click photo to open a gallery) |
The week-long camp involves kids from ages seven to 14 going through drills, training and education of the game. Laviolette coached two sessions of morning ice slot to help the future generation of hockey players.
“I found that both sessions you just really try and keep it simple. I think anytime you’re skating, and passing and handling the puck, you’re developing and improving your skills. That’s what hockey’s all about. You have to be able to do all of those really well.”
That’s not to say he took it easy on the 50-plus kids out there. There was plenty of hard skating drills, stick-handling and even some of the drills that he uses for professional hockey players.
“We tried to do some of the drills that we did on the Flyers. The simple ones, real basic and some of the things we do in practice just to give them a taste of what we do on the ice.”
Of course the biggest drill and challenge out there for the kids was easily the most popular.
“Anytime you walk out there with a Chris Pronger
autographed stick for a giveaway at the end for a shootout, the kids seemed to get pretty revved up. We had fun out there. It was good to get out there and be a part of it.”
Training camp for the big club kicks off on Friday, Sept. 17 when the players report, and even though the bench boss enjoyed the ride all the way to Stanley Cup Final last season, he is more than anxious to greet his new group of players and even gave us some clues as to what we can expect starting from Day One.
“I think you see a lot of the same things [as the regular season]. There’s more time to implement things, you can take the time and put in different parts of the system, review different parts of the system. You get to see some young players in the organization playing games and scrimmages. I think that’s a real opportunity to evaluate people when you get in game-like situations, so when I came in on Dec. 4 everything was really rushed. We had eight games in 13 days and not a lot of time to do anything. It just seemed like we were always behind the eight-ball, so this gives us a chance to get out in front and be prepared and make sure when the puck drops we’re ready to play.”Want to start skating? Get information your local rink here!
With the 2010-11 hockey season right around the corner, now is the perfect
time to check out the great programs at a rink near you! Click here for a PDF
The best way to watch Flyers Hockey…as close as possible! Great lower level locations are available now. As a Flyers Season Ticket Holder, you’ll receive great benefits including big discounts, flexible payment plans and playoff priority. Call 215-218-PUCK (7825) or visit philadelphiaflyers.com.