Naples, Fla. -- For the second consecutive day, the Nashville Predators took to the ice at Germain Arena in Naples, Fla. Much like the practices in Nashville, the team was divided into three different groups (blue, white and silver), and spent time working on odd-man rushes, two-on-two battles and special teams.
Despite playing games on Monday night, Tuesday’s practice had the up-tempo pace that we’ve come to expect from the 2013 Training Camp. Players were put through a series of drills and worked with coaches on the finer points of their respective games. Following practice, the team completed a dry-land workout before heading back to hotel for an afternoon team building meeting.
A random appearance at Tuesday morning’s practice was retired NHL defenseman Brian Rafalski, formerly of the New Jersey Devils and Detroit Red Wings. Rafalski, who lives in the Naples area and coaches youth hockey, spent time watching practice and talking with Assistant General Manager Paul Fenton, before visiting with a couple of players.
Wednesday, Sept. 18
Wednesday morning’s session opened as Goaltending Coach Mitch Korn worked to fine tune the games of the eight goalies in camp. The goalie session was short, but mirrored the pace of full practice as the goalies knocked out a series of drills in short order.
Two-time Vezina Trophy finalist Pekka Rinne has looked sharp while on the ice – making save after save during drills without any evidence of lingering issues or fatigue. Rinne has made a lot of progress since stepping on the ice just a few weeks ago and according the line-up for tonight’s game in Tampa, the 6-5 Finn will be in net for the first time this preseason.
Once the players finished up on Wednesday, they embarked on an afternoon backwater fishing excursion along the coast near Ft. Myers. The three-hour fishing derby consisted of 17 boats with a veteran, a couple of rookies and a local guide each. All boat returned safely to shore, but sunburns were plentiful among the group. Prizes were award in several categories with Mike Fisher’s boat taking home the grand prize for most fish caught with 22. There were rumors of a shark being caught by one of the team’s boats, but there was no supporting evidence.
Thursday, Sept. 19
This morning’s practice was a light affair compared to the previous two days in Naples. The non-playing group spent an hour on the ice before heading back to the hotel to pack for Tampa. The playing team met with Strength and Conditioning Coach David Good in the hotel’s fitness center for a brief morning workout before heading to lunch and the bus to Tampa.
The Predators take on the Tampa Bay Lightning tonight at 6:30 p.m. CT. Stay tuned to nashvillepredators.com and on Twitter (@PredsNHL) for in-game updates.
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