IT'S THE REMIX TO NUTRITION
One important trip for development camp is a journey to the grocery store to learn proper nutrition. Almost every camper is a college-age guy, not to mention an NHL prospect who needs to figure out healthy meals to cook and eat every day in order to continue getting stronger.
Dietician Jessica Dugan led one of the tours and knows what to tell young athletes about the food they put in their bodies.
"Keep it simple. Cooking can be really overwhelming when you think everything has to be a gourmet meal," Dugan said. "But to get in the nutrients you need, you don't have to overthink it. You can work with simple flavors and fresh foods."
She recommends young athletes look at the food recommendations on MyPlate.gov and make sure one-half to one-third of their daily servings include fruits and vegetables.
Young hockey players also must make sure they are eating every four to five hours, says Penguins nutrition consultant Leslie Bonci, instead of waiting until the end of the day.
"Hockey is so energy-expending. It's the quick burst as well as the endurance," Bonci said. "You can't be playing catch-up."
Forward Teddy Blueger will take some of the cooking tips back with him to Minnesota State for his sophomore year. He says he only started cooking for himself this summer, but will now be adding in some fruits and new vegetables to his meals.
"It's really important to be able to recover from practice-to-practice and game-to-game," Blueger said. "If you're able to maintain a healthy diet, it will help you through that process."
Philip Samuelsson and Brian Dumoulin know their way around a blue line. How about a mixing bowl?
Reid McNeill gets defensive on some vegetables.
Shorts and sandals/boat shoes are, evidently, required attire for the prospects.
"No, Froot Loops are not technically a fruit. But you're on the right track?"
Free kale samples! What every boy dreams of!
Stick a fork in it.
Trying to copy Bill Guerin's "crossed arms" look? ... 9 out of 10.
You get one guess as to which section this is. Don't let us steer you wrong.
The guys ate actual non-sample food after the tour.-- James Santelli
Following the nutritional instructions, everyone headed to go bowling. Although it was pleasant to be in the air conditioning away from the heat and rain, the players were just as competitive as they are on the ice.
"I started off hot and now I'm slowing down," said forward Jake Guentzel. "I've got to pick it up here."
Guentzel is a first-timer at development camp as a 2013 draftee, but he realizes the friendships he is starting this week will only build in the coming years.
"It's always fun being around the guys," Guentzel said. "To meet new guys I never knew, because I'll be playing with them for a while, that's always a good part of it."
Bowling means bowling shoes!
We're not sure how we could bowl with that water tank making psychadelic colors behind us. Groooovy.
We like to imagine the players are not even bowling, just posing like that.
Hustling down the lane as the bowling alley is swarmed by red fireflies (also known as lasers).-- James Santelli
THEY SAID IT
It's our goal each summer at development camp to catch up with every prospect that's in attendance. So far, Sam, our intern James and I have been dominating at this task, as we have just two players left to speak with before camp breaks up tomorrow.
For today's edition of "They Said It," we'd like to share soundbites from a pair of 2013 picks that were not at the draft in New Jersey: forward Blaine Byron and defenseman Dane Birks. We'll have get-to-know type stories up later within the next few weeks, but for now here's a teaser.--Michelle Crechiolo
CAMP COACHES TALK
Penguins assistant to the general manager Tom Fitzgerald and WBS assistant coach Alain Nasreddine spoke to the media today about how camp has gone so far.
Fitzy provided an update on 2013 second-round draft pick Tristan Jarry, who was struck with a shot in the collarbone during the forwards' practice session. Jarry left the ice and did not return for the rest of that session or the defense-only practice, but Fitzgerald said the goalie is okay.
"He got popped pretty good there on the collarbone, but he’s okay. He’s going to be fine.
When asked if it's scary to see a player go off like that, Fitzgerald responded, "It’s funny, (assistant general manager) Jason Botterill and I were sitting in the stands saying 'tomorrow's scrimmage should be probably one of our best ones, if not the best, because we haven't had any injuries yet,' and then all of a sudden the poor young kid goes down with a shot. I’m sure he’s going to put a protector on now covering his collarbone."
Fitzgerald said last year's scrimmage was better with more players "because guys had more rest. They can go harder." He expects Saturday's to be the best yet, featuring a high pace as each team will have 10 forwards and six defensemen. There will be penalty shots instead of power plays.
Watch him and Nasreddine below. They are awesome guys, passionate about their jobs, that always have thoughtful and insightful things to say...TOM FITZGERALD
--Michelle Crechiolo and James Santelli
As part of our Pulitzer Prize-winning series "Close-Ups of Goalie Masks," we present: Eric Hartzell.
All right, skaters, let's take it from the top... a five, six, seven, eight!
You can see country Brad Paisley on the side of Matt Murray's mask. No wonder we won that Pulitzer.
No, no, you all are totally outside the line.
good form. Broadway-ready form.
Skate away, the chupacabra's back!
"I think he uses Pomade. Not expensive but it works, because his hair looks great. I asked Pouliot myself."
Oskar Sundqvist, father of the Swedish existentialist movement, stops to consider the necessary absurdity of the human condition.
Sean Maguire goes basic with his mask, and we just love it.
Well now this show is getting some high-stepping. And props!
Dominik Uher rises and fires. As for his form... 9 out of 10.
Whoa, I'm seeing double! Four nets!
Head coach Dan Bylsma took the ice for the first time this camp to work with the forwards.
Good morning, coach.
C'mon ride the train...
Bill Guerin smashes young hockey players with a giant pillow.
Defensive prospects test important skills: (1) hearing, (2) ability to stand and look cool. Brian Dumoulin wins this round.
That looks like a pretty good shot, Brian. Right on the money, in fact. Yep, that one is going in.
Miss from you too, Scott?
Pictured: defensive prospect Olli Maatta, his cowlick.-- James Santelli
GOTTA GET DOWN ON FRIDAY
Doesn't camp go by too quickly? One day you are introducing yourself to every fellow camper in sight, and suddenly you are one day away from playing a hockey scrimmage in front of thousands of fans. Every year.
Friday at development camp did not have any fun scrimmages or paintball, but there are still many important activities before Saturday's scrimmage. The prospects are separated into forwards, who focus on puck handling, and defensemen, who work on retrievals, skating and slapshots. Or as we like to call them... slappies.
After lunch, the players will head out to Giant Eagle to learn about proper nutrition. All these guys between ages 18-24, and do you remember what you tried to cook at that age? Did you really think you should cut up hot dogs to put in tacos? Then later they move on to the bowling alley to do some lane shifting. Wow, we're on a roll here.
NHL players will be back in the Olympic Winter Games, folks! So let's get to our Penguins Report with John Williams' Olympic classic:
-- James Santelli