Mikhail Grabovski, Chad Johnson and Jaroslav Halak skated at Islanders Iceworks Monday, joining the growing number of players participating in informal pre-training camp skates.
Grabovski and Johnson skated with the team and prospects, while Halak briefly skated by himself on the second Iceworks rink.
Josh Bailey, Anders Lee, Jack Skille and Ville Pokka were among other notable Islanders at Iceworks Monday, as the pool of returning players continues to grow.
The players kept up a high pace at the skate, with veteran Eric Boutlon dictating the drills.
Grabovski, Halak and Johnson were all available to the media following the skate. Here are some news, notes, pictures and quotes from today's action.
New Pads: Johnson and Halak both sported new orange and blue pads at Monday’s skate. Halak was wearing Brian’s gear while Johnson was fitted with brand new Vaughns.
Halak: I've always said it's good to have two good goalies and really good competition between each other. They push each other in practices and games. Obviously whoever plays better, that goalie should play. We’ll see how its going to work out, but obviously I’m going to do my best every day and every practice.
They have a young team and a great group of guys over here. They are only going to get better. I was glad that they traded for me and showed good interest in me. I'm happy to be here and thrilled about training camp and the start of the season.
Grabovski: Personally, I'm just happy find a good team, and sign the long deal. Then I can stay and just enjoy playing and relax. It's a great city, and it'll be a great chance to play next year in new stadium.
It’s always better to come early and introduce myself to the guys. The coach is different, the players are closer. It’s important to have a good relationship with everybody.
Johnson: Being in a situation where I can come in and help a team get better this year and obviously play a similar amount of games hopefully as last year. I haven't really talked about that situation, but I think knowing the past and being able to give Halak some breaks, I think it benefits everybody.
For them, consistency throughout [the season] is the biggest thing. You know they have all the pieces here to do well, so again, it’s just another year of experience for guys and myself included. It’s exciting for everybody to come out and prove something.