Day one of training camp isn’t very exciting. The media stands around slugging coffee, eating muffins,debating the reasoning behind the training camp lines and wondering how a station can report Pat Burns has passed away, only to recant the report due to erroneous information. ***I'm not making light of Burns' health, rather how incredibly insensitive we've become as a society that people race to be the first to report someone has passed away. It's disgusting in my view.***
At Rexall the players get to visit the dentist, doctor, nutritionist, trainers and then find out how hard they worked in the off season during the Windgate and Vo2 tests. The rookies did their medicals last week so they had an easier day.
This year the line combinations were more interesting, because everyone was wondering where Taylor Hall, Jordan Eberle and Magnus Paajarvi would line up. Here's what you will see on the ice tomorrow at Rexall Place.
Dubnyk (40) and Pitton (50)
Whitney (6)/Petry (58)
Strudwick (43)/Blain (61)
Davidson (60)/Bendfeld (55)/Ehrhardt (75)
Penner (27)/Gagner (89)/Hemsky (83)
Schraber (74)/Pitlick (68)/ Ondrus (25)
Hartikainen (56)/Reddox (85)/Stortini (46)
Cornet (51)/Kytnar (64)/Abney (53)
Jacques (22) won’t be skating. He is still not recovered from surgery.
Deslauriers (38)/Khabibulin (35)/Bunz (1)
Peckham (49)/Gilbert (77)
Petiot (37)/ Plante (48)
Marincin (70)/Taylor (81)/Toigo (73)
Paajarvi (91)/Cogliano (13)/ Brule (67)
Giroux (12)/O’Marra (42)/MacDonald (57)
Hamilton (52)/Moran (20)/ Thomas (59)
MacIntyre (33)/Martindale (66)/ Livingston (69)
Gerber (29)/ Roy (1)
Vandermeer (2)/Foster (26)
Chorney (41)/Smid (5)
Belle (45)/Motin (39)/Schlumpf (72)
Hall (4)/Horcoff (10)/Eberle (14)
Jones (28)/Fraser (16)/Omark (23)
Stewart (36)/Vande Velde (54)/Pelss (63)
Gimblett (65)/Marquardt (62) Czerwonka (71)
Keep in mind that these are just training camp lines, but it is clear that Tom Renney wants Ales Hemsky to be excited and motivated from the start of camp. Last year Hemsky wasn’t impressed having J.F Jacques on his LW to start the season.
Horcoff and Hemsky haven’t been on a training camp line for the past three years, so there is still a chance they might eventually end up together, but it doesn’t surprise me that Horcoff, the best two-way centre, is flanked by two rookies.
The line combo that intrigues me the most is the Paajarvi/Cogliano/Brule trio. They have speed to burn, and if Cogliano’s off-season faceoff work pays off, then they could stick together. I don’t see Horcoff starting the season with two rookies, but that’s what the preseason is for.
I’ve been told that Omark will line up with some offensive minded players in preseason, but they also want to see how he can cycle the puck, so it makes sense that he lines up with Jones and Fraser for training camp.