PEI Day One: Glen Puts the Boys through the Paces

The first day of training camp in Prince Edwards Island, Canada is completed and we’ve learned a little bit of what the players and we as fans can expect from a new season, 7 new team mates and a changed up coaching staff that includes brand new head coach Glen Gulutzan.

The general consensus from today was, “Pace”.  The practice had a high pace to it and from what Coach Gully has said, every practice should be that way from here on out.

Yeah, and we’ll practice that way – “pacey” – all the time.  If you’re going to play pacey you have to practice pacey; the two have to be together.

At the bottom of this article there is a video of the post-camp interview with Glen Gulutzan in which he is asked about the pace and more.  So, check that video out.  But first, I’d like to discuss some other things we learned not only from the interview but also from camp itself…

Vernon Fiddler

I think we forget one thing about Mr. Fiddler.  His contract length.  3-years to pick up the grinding center off of the free agent market this year.  This shows a clear dedication to a certain style of play.  This was touched on briefly by Glen in the video as well and it reminded me that this off-season’s plethora of new talent wasn’t just about filling up holes, reaching the new cap floor or even about making the team deeper in light of the loss of Brad Richards.  It was all of those things, but it was also about the future of the Stars – in my opinion.  Otherwise, why bother signing a grinder for 3-years?  Joe is clearly thinking ahead, even though we as fans tend to think about this year and whether we will be making the playoffs or not.

Thanks to Mark over at Andrew’s DSP we get to look at the line combinations used today and its clear by looking at them that there is a lot of emphasis on systems and learning them more so than finding the duos and trios that are going to run your forward lines.  Here’s a look:

Group A

Petersen-Ribeiro-Ryder
Morrow-Wandell-Vincour
Barch-Morin-Sceviour/Roman
Schultz/Wathier-Garbutt-Sawada

Goligoski-Larsen
Dillon-Robidas
Fistric-Spang
Labrie-Coyle

Raycroft
Bachman

Group B

Fraser-Benn-Ott
Eriksson-Burish-Glennie
Tousignant-Fiddler-Dvorak
Gazdic-Dowell-Godard/Ritchie

Grossman-Fortunus
Pardy-Souray
Jordie Benn-Daley
Oleksiak/Theriau-Lukowich

Lehtonen
Beskorowany
Campbell

I think breaking up Morrow and Ribeiro while keeping Ryder with Ribs is telling.  It says that they know what works, Ribs and Morrow works.  So they split them up so its easier to concentrate on systems when you ar eplaying with players whose tendencies you aren’t necessarily familiar with so you are forced to stay on task and in position.  Meanwhile, the hope is that Ryder and Ribeiro’s chemistry from their days in Montreal is in tact, they need to know if this is true.  It works both ways and it shows that Glen just might know what he’s doing after all.  However, I look for the practice lines to morph into something more legitimate over the next 4 days and we will get to see what Glen is experimenting with in his head for a team with so many new faces and even some rookies to test out.

The team also had some video time in which the consensus from players was that the new coach was definitely detail-oriented as he conveyed this in both the practice itself and how detailed his overlook of the video was.  Check out more of what Gully had to say in the video below and stay tuned to Blackout Dallas throughout the week for more PEI updates.

http://video.nhl.com/videocenter/console?&id=123495

console?&id=123495

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