At long last, live hockey in South Florida! At approximately 9:30 A.M. this morning the Florida Panthers rookie squad took the ice today for the first workout of the season, officially starting training camp. Some noteable names that were there were Shawn Matthias, Kendall McArdle, first round draft pick Dmitry Kulikov, Evgeny Dadonov and last season’s number one draft pick Keaton Ellerby.
In my opinion the top three performers of the day were McArdle, Matthias and defenseman Jason Garrison all of which are hoping to make the club this year. These three were hustling, making the plays and showing that they are serious about making the jump to the NHL.
If you have never been to an organized hockey practice, you should go as soon as you get a chance. I’ve had the plasure to see a few, and from a few different coaching styles. One thing I can say about coach Peter DeBoer, he doesn’t mess around. Practices are crisp, quick, hard and you better pay attention. Keaton Ellerby was told more than once to “step it up”, or something like that. DeBoer skates his team hard and gives them drills that keeps everyone moving and involved.
Enjoy some more photos taken from this mornings workout.
Workouts continue through Thursday at Incredible Ice in Coral Springs from 9:00 A.M. to 11:00 A.M.. Check them out if you get a chance. If you stay after the rookies leave the ice, you might get a glimpse of a few of the other Panther players that are here as well.
Thanks for reading! Enjoy Labour Day!!