After three groups of players went through a few drills and some fitness testing yesterday, the team was on the ice for a full practice today.
“It’s nice to be back,” Taylor Hall said. “It was a long time not skating and certainly, I don’t feel 100% out there. It’s just very awkward and all of your gear seems to be like it’s new or something. I’m having fun being back. It’s good to be around the guys. It’s just good to be practicing again and get your heart rate up.”
For the Oilers, it was nice to get back into the swing of a full practice.
“Today’s another day to get used to being with the guys and, for me, trying to track pucks and get in front and re-establish good habits,” Goalie Ben Scrivens said. “It’s still early. We’ve got some time left and it’s feeling better. Yesterday was a little sketchy out there. Today felt better and hopefully tomorrow’s even better than that. It’s a matter of establishing good habits and trying to go from there.”
The Oilers are attempting to use the Olympic break to install some things into their systems before the NHL season picks back up again.
“The first couple of days is just making sure we have our hands and our heads back up to speed,” Head Coach Dallas Eakins said. “We’ll be modifying some things that we’ve been doing with some of our system stuff and adding some stuff to it as well. It’s interesting. You actually have more time right now to work with your team than you actually do at training camp because you’re preparing for the games in camp as well.”
Hall added, “We’re changing a couple of things system-wise. If there is a time to do it, it’s right now just to get used to everything and what it’s like to practice like that. I think for me, I’m just kind of working on the basics again. Just shooting, passing, skating and making sure that when I come back for these last 22 games, I’m the best I can be.”