EDMONTON, AB - After their 5-2 loss to Winnipeg on Monday, Edmonton had an off day to collect their thoughts. Wednesday morning, it was back to work for the orange and blue. It was a hard skate for the Oil, who need to get back to realizing how hard it is to win in the NHL.
"We started at training camp on day one reminding players how hard it is to win," said Head Coach Todd McLellan. "Part of solving that puzzle, if you will, is work ethic and I thought we were really outworked the other night (against Winnipeg). Perhaps a bit in Vancouver, but the other night we tried to do a lot of things the easy way and today was a reminder we have to work. I'm happy with the way the guys responded, happy with the effort we put in today and now now it's got to carry over into tomorrow, Friday and then the game on Saturday."
A day off allowed the team to come back rested. Today, McLellan said the players "took their lumps" in the video session then came to work in the on-ice portion of practice.
"I don't look at today being a bad day or a wasted day of conditioning," he said. "We got a lot out of practice as well, but it's what we do with it. Teams have to be reminded, especially early in the year, it's tough to win. Other teams are going to be ready for you and if you get outworked you're guaranteed to lose."
The players appreciated the hard work put in as well.
"Today was a good day of work," said Oscar Klefbom. "We have a long way to go. There's no reason to push any panic buttons right now. We have to get back to our roots here and play good hockey. Like I said, there are a lot of games left but we've got to stick together and play better now."