They said it.
Before the first official practice of Nashville Predators training camp begins on Saturday morning at Centennial Sportsplex (full schedule here), a number of Preds players have met the media over the past two days to discuss a little bit of everything.
Here are the top quotes from the first two days of #PredsCamp 2017:
Center Nick Bonino on receiving some good-natured ribbing from his teammates after winning the Stanley Cup with Pittsburgh last season:
"[I've gotten] a pretty good amount, which is good. I think it could be awkward if they didn't rip me a little bit, but there are some ring leaders I'll have to sort out with later (laughs), but it's all good natured, I think. I'm just really happy to be here, and I'll try to assimilate as quickly as I can to the locker room because they're a very tight group and it's a group you really want to be a part of."
Video: Nick Bonino hopes to be ready for opening night
Defenseman P.K. Subban on new Preds defenseman Alexei Emelin (the two were teammates in Montreal):
"He's a physical player. He definitely brings a physical element to our team, and on our backend, we talk about the skill level and the mobility we have on our backend, and he adds to that as well. I think that's an area he doesn't get enough credit in. Playing with him in Montreal, he has the ability to chip in offensively and to still make great plays. He's a heady player, he's really smart, he can make plays with five guys out there, but definitely the strong point is how physical he can be and how hard he is to play against. I know playing with him, he can create a lot of room and space out there for players on his own team because of the fact that guys on the other team have got to keep their head up when they're out there with him."
Goaltender Pekka Rinne on dealing with the loss in the Final over the summer and moving on:
"I did find closure. As soon as the series was done, the first couple days, that was hard to swallow. I was super proud of this team, but also, we got so close that it took a few days, but right after that I was really proud. I was proud of myself, I was proud of the accomplishment we had and everything around it. I was really happy, and to this day, it's something that is a highlight of my career. As a team, we took a huge step toward our ultimate goal moving forward."
Video: P.K. Subban says Preds are hungry for season
Subban on respecting the other 30 NHL teams all trying to attain the same goal of winning a Stanley Cup:
"Our hunger is great, but I think everybody, we have to give respect to the other 30 teams in the League that are going to be just as hungry. Every team had their situation in terms of last season. Teams that didn't make the playoffs are hungry to make the playoffs, teams that didn't make the playoffs are hungry to make the playoffs, teams that were in the playoffs maybe weren't happy with the run that they had, and then there's teams like us that were able to push a little bit further than everybody else and didn't get the result they wanted. For us, it's not about looking that far ahead. Last season we didn't do that, we just focused on getting better every day, being better players every day, being better teammates and being a better team. I think the same thing is going to happen whether you start the season 10-0 or 0-10. Your focus has to be to get better and that's our focus."
Frederick Gaudreau on learning lessons from the playoffs and moving forward into this season:
"It was a good experience for me, personally, and for everybody that was there, but it all comes down to what we can do right here, right now. The past is the past, the future is the future, but the only thing we can control is every practice and how we show up, and I think that's the main focus again."