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Second session skates hard

by Dyan LeBourdais / New York Islanders

Today's second on-ice session was ramped-up from the first group’s session. After the team defeated the Devils 6-2 on Saturday, they were given the day off to rest on Sunday. As a result, Islanders Head Coach Jack Capuano skated the guys (who weren’t headed to Calgary for the exhibition) extremely hard.

“It was a good practice after a day off,” said Islanders defenseman Mike Mottau. “We worked on some stuff defensively, that’s when we did some one-on-one drills where we had to get up ice and come back quickly, get some speed.”

He added, “We briefly touched on some in-zone coverage and communicating with our forwards down low, so it was a good defensive day for us. At the end we did a little conditioning skates. It’s always good after a day off to skate it out and get ready to go back at it tomorrow.”

Despite having a good, hard practice, Islanders forward Matt Moulson said the day of rest was a welcome break from the intense on-ice and gym sessions.

“Obviously the day off was well needed,” Moulson said. “We’ve been going pretty hard, skating every day, so it was good to get some rest. Plus, we’ve talked about getting rest throughout the season this year and making sure we work hard when we are back to work. It was a real good work day today.”

Now that the team has begun their second full week of camp and there’s less than two weeks until opening night, what are the players focusing on individually? What's the mindset?

“I think just working on things you need to work on personally and as a team,” Moulson said. “We have to make sure we are ready to go October 8 with whatever that may be, system wise for the team aspect or personally working on things in your game you need to get going for the season.”

He added, “It’s been high intensity high pace every single practice we’ve had. I’m sure it’s going to be the case for the next two weeks so just making sure you’re making good decisions at a high pace.”
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