While I’m not going to predict any career trajectories based off of a bit more than an hours on ice observation. Some players did stand out for one reason or another. Here’s the quick hits.
- Ryan Spooner, has filled out and looks stronger and larger but hasn’t lost even a hint of speed or agility. When I spoke to him after practice he was extremely focused on playing in the NHL this fall.
- Colton Hargrove who is headed to Western Michigan showed off some high end hand eye coordination. He’s a big, solid guy who grew up a Mike Modano fan in his native Texas. Said he sees similarities in his game to Milan Lucic.
- Adam Morrison is more concerned with focusing on refining his game this year than where he plays. He said he was in Boston during the spring for the playoffs but slightly surprised by the atmosphere at development camp.
- Malcolm Subban drew a lot of attention and is a more active goaltender than many, the OHL stud goaltender and first round pick is wearing his Bellville Bulls pads.
- Hamilton has put on some muscle, his wrist shot looked smooth and quick.
When Don Sweeney spoke after practice he mentioned that while no one will make the team out of development camp they expect some of these campers to come in and push for a job. The chance to push aside a veteran does exist. From his comments other, I would guess there are three forwards and one defenseman at camp who can be expected to supply the most pressure. I think any of the veterans who show up this fall out of shape or try and sleep walk through camp might find themselves in a different uniform before the season starts.
There are some differences this camp to previous ones. First off six goaltenders makes for not a great deal of crease time. The total roster on the other hand is smaller than in past years. Part of this reflects the depth of the Boston team and the fairly young players already on it. Another part may well be the pending lockout. A player in the locker room did mention the pending labor dispute and that it might affect the season. With the turnover in some other NHL teams management offices I can imagine young players going to where they expect a better change to play in the NHL next season, whenever it may be, than to a deep perennial playoff team.