|Scott Gordon |
Photo by Rich Stieglitz
Scott Gordon wasted no time proving that he is in fact a “demanding” coach. With two-hour long practices split into conditioning and learning his relentless puck pursuit system, the players were exhausted, but enthusiastic about their first day at Training Camp in Moncton, New Brunswick.
"It was a great up-tempo practice," said captain Bill Guerin. "There was a lot of speed to our practice. It's no secret, Scott wants to create offense and generate speed. There was a lot of structure to his practice and the guys responded well."
There is no question that there is a purpose to every drill at practice with Gordon, who is very active on the ice during the skates.
"The biggest thing we want to do is push the play in all three zones," said Gordon. "To do that, we're going to condition our players in practice so it's easier in games. I don't want to condition them just by having them do sprints. I want to incorporate conditioning while learning the system."
For anyone, the task of running a week-long Training Camp for 60 players would be daunting, but Gordon has clearly stated goals that he wants to achieve while in Canada. No matter what level the player is—NHL, AHL or junior—he wants everyone at Camp to come away with the same message.
"This week is about accomplishing conditioning through the style of play we want our team to play," said Gordon. "We want to implement as much of our system as we can in these next three days before the first exhibition game. At the same time, the players need to understand it's going to take time and patience and not just going through the motions to learn it. We worked pretty hard today and that's how we want to practice all of the time."
Don't expect to see much special teams practice early on in Camp. Gordon doesn't feel there's a purpose, so early in the game, to tackle the power play and shorthanded situations.
"Because we have a lot of personnel who won't be here it's kind of a waste of effort to work on the power play and penalty kill," said Gordon. "Once we get past the first exhibition game on Tuesday, we'll start looking at what we need to work on. When we get back to New York and prepare for the final exhibition games, we'll start working on special teams."
Gordon has been in Moncton for less than 24 hours and hasn't had much time to see the city, but he has been impressed with people of this fast-growing city in the Maritimes.
"Everybody has been very helpful and the hospitality has been tremendous," said Gordon. "From the people at the hotel to the people at the rink, it's been great." Click here
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