By Jim Cerny, newyorkrangers.com
Informal on-ice workouts continued for the Rangers on Tuesday with 11 players taking part, including three who were making their 2010-11 pre-camp debuts on the MSG Training Center ice -- alternate captain Ryan Callahan
, center Brian Boyle
, and defenseman Matt Gilroy.
Among the players who took part in both Monday and Tuesday’s workouts was newcomer Todd White, the 35 year-old veteran center the Rangers acquired from the Atlanta Thrashers this summer.
|Already skating at the MSG Training Center, Todd White said he is reinvigorated by his fresh NHL start. |
Now that he and his wife have rented a new home and placed their children in school, White wants to focus solely on making a positive first impression with his new team
“I am looking to get back to where I was two years ago and contribute as much as I can offensively to help the team win,” said White, who recorded a career-high 73 points with the Thrashers in 2008-09. “I am excited about the opportunity here.”
A three-time 50-plus point scorer over the previous eight seasons, White is also a strong defensive center who excels on the penalty kill. He is hopeful that his versatility impresses the coaching staff during the pre-season.
“I can play different roles depending upon what the coaching staff is looking for,” White said. “In the past I have played offensive roles and defensive roles. I just am interested to hear what is expected of me here.”Dubinsky: 2009-10 season was important lesson
Rangers forward Brandon Dubinsky
was his usual boisterous self during Tuesday’s workout, loudly celebrating a goal and just as loudly showing his emotion after being stopped on a great scoring chance by goaltender Henrik Lundqvist
Later in the locker room, Dubinsky reflected on the Rangers’ late-season surge and just missing out on a 2010 Eastern Conference playoff spot.
"You can ask each and every guy, towards the end of the season there was a different feel in here, like we had become a team and guys were playing for each other and wanted to win for each other,” said Dubinsky. “We were right where we wanted to be at the end of the year, so I am glad that we didn’t make too many changes this summer. But we still have to use last year as a learning tool and remember that every game and point in the regular season is vital.”
Dubinsky scored a career-high 20 goals last season and recorded a career-best 44 points despite missing 13 games due to injury. Should he be able to improve upon those numbers this season, the Rangers’ chances of making the playoffs improve greatly.
“I am excited and anxious to get going here,” said Dubinsky, 24. “I am ready for the process to begin: training camp, then the pre-season, the season, and the playoffs. It’s been a long off-season and I want to get going.”
Boyle sharper for 2010-11
In his first day back on the ice, Boyle said he added several pounds of muscle to his already-imposing 6-foot-7-inch frame after an intense off-season training regimen that included boxing workouts. He also took part in a full summer’s worth of power-skating lessons with former Canadian Olympian Barbara Underhill. Boyle believes the power skating work is critical to his continuing improvement as an NHL player.
“Barb helped me change my stride somewhat, just simplify everything to make my skating more smooth,” Boyle said. “It was something that I felt was important for me to improve on to help get me to that next level.”
After excelling in the on-ice morning workout with his teammates, roofing a pair of goals during the 3-on-3 scrimmage, Boyle returned in the early afternoon with Underhill and fellow center Artem Anisimov
for power-skating drills.
“I am not content to just be where I was last year,” said Boyle, who notched four goals over 71 games with the Blueshirts in 2009-10. “I am looking to move up and make more of an impact.”
More players making way to Training Center
In addition to Boyle, White, Dubinsky, Lundqvist, Gilroy, Callahan, and Anisimov, Tuesday’s workout included Wade Redden
, Evgeny Grachev, Steve Eminger
, and Pavel Valentenko
. More players are expected to arrive for the informal practices as the week progresses.