DAY 5: SAYING GOODBYE
Well I've wrapped up my first NHL Camp and it's been a great experience, one that I'll never forget.
The thing that sticks out most in my mind is that it was really cool that the organization treats you like a professional, even though most of us are young in Junior careers and even college.
It's a very welcoming feeling no matter if you're a first round draft pick, a late round draft pick, free agent or camp invitee.
This was also my first time in the Philadelphia area. I saw a little bit of the city while I was here and I'm not really used to that. Coming from Edmonton, it's totally different. But we had some great weather and were able to walk around.
… and the fans didn't disappoint at all. They made signs and came out to our skate and were cheering for us. They even followed us down to the beach.
My roommate in this camp was Andrew Ryan, so I got to know him well, but really I got a chance to know a lot of people here. Coming in here you know nobody and now that I'm leaving I feel like I have 30 new friends.
From here I'm going back up to Edmonton to skate and train for the upcoming hockey season. I can't wait for it to get here and get back to Rookie Camp in the Fall.
Thanks for tagging along with me!-Tyrell
DAY 4: TRIAL ON THE ISLE
Hey Flyers fans, I'm at Trial on the Isle today… and what an amazing day - I've never been a part of something like this before and had no idea what to expect.
I got up around 5:50 am to head over to Skate Zone and catch the bus to head down to the beach.
Now that I've been through one, let me tell you from the player's perspective - it was tough!
We began on the beach and ran a mile at a pretty fast pace, then afterwards we got into a team of four. My team was Sam [Morin], Ryan [McKay] and Mathers [Derek Mathers] and on the mile back to the starting point we did team building exercises where two people were blinded and two people had to wear earplugs.
It was pretty hard to communicate with each other, but that's the point. Communication is important in life and especially in hockey. I was one of the ones blindfolded, by the way…
The water sports were really fun. I pretty much took a dip every chance I got! I don't think I'm the best kayaker that's for sure… check out this pic:
Although we were separated into teams and want to beat each other it's good to get out of a rink environment and see all of your teammates in that type of setting. Especially if it's on a beach.
The challenges today really do show how people react to certain things and how people communicate with each other.
After volleyball, I'm convinced that my teammates (and probably the fans) like to see me take a tumble! I fell into the sand and into the net more than a few times, but it was all worth it. I set up Sam a few times for good spikes, but I don't even think he needed to jump! I got a few spikes in too, so that felt really good.
What really made the day was the crowd we had here. On the beach and at the Yacht Club, there were so many people out there to support us and the autograph signing was incredible - to have about 500 people in line to meet us was really amazing and special - it's a memory I'm never going to forget.
Tomorrow is our last day here, so I'll catch up with all of you then…-Tyrell
DAYS 2 & 3: THESE ARE SOME LONG DAYS
Hey Flyers fans, I'm really starting to get to know the guys a lot better over the last two days here.
When I came in I knew Taylor Leier really good, but I'm at the point now where I'm on a good talking basis with a lot more of the guys. Specifically I'm starting to hang out with the older players here at the camp.
I guess that's bound to happen because we're all together in a hotel. We walk over together to eat and go in meetings - together.
Getting up around 6:30 every morning is hard, but that's just it. That's what they're trying to re-enforce here at camp - It's a hard process but it's totally worth it. This organization really welcomes you here and makes things comfortable for you, so for me, I really want to work hard for them in return… and chase my dream of playing in the NHL someday.
Something I didn't expect, but was pretty interesting, was that we went over the Wells Fargo Center and took a cooking class. Looking back on that it was really helpful because they teach you to figure out ways to cook healthier foods, and teach you that it's not that difficult.
We never actually cooked. We just watched, then ate… the food was good too!
I wish I had more interesting stuff to tell you over the last two days, but these days are pretty long and last night I went back to the hotel after dinner and did not leave my bed!
Going through the off-ice and on-ice portions it becomes clear that you really need to get your rest in. I think I fell asleep around 9:30 last night.
When I'm not sleeping though I like to download music in my spare time and keep in touch with some of my friends online that are scattered throughout the country.
Well, gotta go. Tomorrow is the Trial on the Isle challenge. This will be my first one. I've heard from a couple vets here that its a great day and the fan support is amazing, so I can't wait to experience that.
I hope you're enjoying the blog. If you have any questions for me, feel free to ask below and I'll do the best I can to answer them.-Tyrell
DAY 1: GETTING TO KNOW YOU
Hi Flyers fans, well this past week has been a little crazy with everything that has gone on in my life.
I was drafted into the NHL and that was a dream come true. I actually wasn't at the draft though. I was sitting at home watching it on TV with my dad.
I never expected to get picked as high as I did. I had hopes that I was going to go in the fifth or sixth round. I didn't even see or hear my name being called because the show was on commercial break and all of a sudden someone texted me and was freaking out, and I was like 'what's going on?'
Then my agent called to tell me and I was excited. To be drafted by the Flyers, you know it's such a good organization and they're a team I've really liked my whole life. I didn't even talk with them beforehand either so it was a surprise.
The trip into the area was good. It was a long trip. I flew in from Edmonton with a stop in Minneapolis yesterday. They had a car waiting for me at the airport, so the trip into Voorhees was easy.
Taylor Leier (2012 Flyers Draft Pick) is one of my good buddies. I've known him for over a year now so it was nice to know someone here, being my first camp. We didn't really do much last night except grab dinner at a Brazilian Steakhouse close by.
We met everyone down in the lobby this morning, including Ian Laperriere who walked with us over to the rink.
From there we went through medical physicals, weigh-ins and a team meeting. The meeting was pretty cool - everybody had to stand up and say their name so that was a good way to put a face to the names we're going to be seeing all week.
It's been about two months since I've last been on the ice, so when we skated today around 6 p.m. it was a little rough, but for me it's like riding a bike. It only took about 10-15 minutes to get back into the swing of things.
Well, gotta run and grab something to eat with the team now, it's been a long day here on Day 1, but I hope you guys stay with me for the rest of the week. It should be an exciting camp!-Tyrell