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Training Camp

Taylor Hall ready for first game with Devils

Left wing to skate with Adam Henrique, Devante Smith-Pelly in preseason opener

by Mike G. Morreale @mikemorrealeNHL / NHL.com Staff Writer

NEWARK, N.J. -- Left wing Taylor Hall is excited to join his new teammates in a competitive setting in his first preseason game as a member of the New Jersey Devils against the Montreal Canadiens at Bell Centre on Monday.

The Devils begin their eight-game preseason schedule Monday with split-squad games against the Philadelphia Flyers at Prudential Center (7 p.m. ET) and at Montreal (7:30 p.m. ET).

Hall, who will play left wing on a line with center Adam Henrique and right wing Devante Smith-Pelly, will play his first game in a Devils jersey since being acquired in a trade with the Edmonton Oilers for defenseman Adam Larsson on June 29.

"I'm just looking to get my timing down," Hall said. "I want to work on the things we practiced the last few days and the details that coach John Hynes is looking to instill in our group. I think that's something I'm going to be focused on. I'm certainly going to pay attention to the details that [Hynes] taught and grow my game from there."

Hynes wants Hall to play his game and not feel as though the entire offense rests on his shoulders.

Video: Taylor Hall's impact on the Devils

"He likes to play with speed and likes to play in the offensive zone but the things we want to do systematically fit his game which is why he is such a valuable player for us," Hynes said. "It's not about the pressure of producing. Everyone thinks Taylor Hall has to come in here and score, and lead the offense. Taylor Hall is a part of our team and he just has to worry about playing his game, establishing his habits and understanding how we want to play.

"Also getting comfortable with teammates and coaches and, from there, he has to do his part as a player while having 18 other guys do their job too."

Hall is excited that his family and friends will be present at Bell Centre to witness his first game with the Devils.

"My family is from Kingston (Ontario), which is just a few hours away, so I'll be close to my hometown and it'll be good to get that first game out of the way right off the bat for sure," he said.

Hall led Edmonton in scoring three of the past four seasons, and finished at least top three for the Oilers in each of his six seasons. He had 26 goals and 65 points in 82 games last season.

Video: Hall talks before first preseason game vs. Canadiens

"This is always an excited time of the year," Hall said. "But (you need to remember) even the first regular season game is just one out of 82. The best way to go about your season is to go about it on an even keel and not get too high or low. I'm excited and having that refreshed feeling and that's a good thing but you don't want to get too hyped up, over-skate pucks and not play well, so there's a fine line."

Hall said he has enjoyed each practice that Hynes has conducted since his return to New Jersey on Saturday.

"I think what I like best is how easily he explains things, and the way that he coaches us on the ice because it's intense but fun at the same time," Hall said. "We're learning stuff that will definitely be used in the preseason so we're not wasting any time out there. The details he teaches are very important to winning hockey games so it's great for a guy like me coming in. Even if you've been here, it seems like players are learning something new and that's definitely been the case for me."

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