After a scheduled off day on Saturday, the team's first and only in an abridged training camp, the Carolina Hurricanes returned to the ice at Wake Competition Center on Sunday.
With it came a shift in mindset, too. The first half of camp placed an emphasis on pace, work and review. The latter half, which leads into the start of the 2020-21 season, will focus on dialing in to a game-ready attitude and routine both on and off the ice, and with that comes another level in preparation and intensity.
"It's been a pretty good training camp so far. It's been a lot of systems and battling," Teuvo Teravainen said. "We're getting kind of ready to play. It's good to have at least some game action tomorrow. We'll see how it goes."
Video: "We're getting ready to play."
Teravainen is referencing the Red-White scrimmage that was added to the calendar for Monday, replacing the group practices we've seen each day. It's time to take the details the Canes have been reviewing early in camp and apply them in a game situation.
The countdown to puck drop is on, and the regular season is just four days away.
"I think everyone looks really good," Petr Mrazek said. "I think everyone is ready to go and realy excited for the season to start."
Scrimmage on Tap for Monday
In the absence of a preseason, an intrasquad scrimmage will be as close as the Canes can get to game action prior to Thursday's season opener in Detroit.
"I think we need to have at least one [scrimmage] just to feel like a game," Brind'Amour said last week. "I don't really expect it to be very intense. I'd like it to be, but those have really fallen off over the years."
Though the scrimmage will take place at Wake Competition Center and will begin at the team's typical morning practice time, the Canes are treating it as similar to a gameday as possible, with an on-ice warm-up at 10:30 and puck drop at 11. It won't be a full-on exhibition per se, especially since both sides will have just 14 skaters, but it will at least feel more like an actual game than anything the Canes have been able to do in camp so far.
Video: "Playing teams back to back can get heated."
"You're never going to crush a teammate or anything like that," Jake Gardiner said. "You can't really replicate playing a game, even in something like [a scrimmage]. Thursday is going to be really when we get started, but our practices have been really hard, and physically I think our team is in pretty good shape."
The Lines & Pairings
After the second day of camp, Brind'Amour cautioned against reading into the forward line combinations and defensive pairs. But, it's worth noting that what the team rolled out on day one has remained largely unchanged and will be featured in Monday's scrimmage.
With that in mind, here's how the Canes have lined up through the first six days of practice.
Forsling Claimed on Waivers
In advance of finalizing their active roster and taxi squad, the Canes placed Antoine Bibeau, Jeremy Bracco, Gustav Forsling, Steven Lorentz, Max McCormick, Drew Shore and Spencer Smallman on waivers. Everyone cleared on Saturday except Forsling, who was claimed by the Florida Panthers.
Forsling played in 122 NHL games with Chicago from 2016-19 and now reunites with head coach Joel Quenneville in Florida.
The Canes remain deep on the blue line with Joakim Ryan, who has logged 141 NHL games since 2017, and Jake Bean both capable of stepping in. Joey Keane, who was named to the AHL's All-Rookie Team last season, practiced with the NHL group on Friday and is one to watch, as well. Losing Forsling does dent Chicago's potential defensive depth, but that's where the split affiliation with Nashville will be beneficial.