Murray talks training camp

Here’s an interview from a couple days ago with Terry Murray, discussing some of the happenings at the rookie camp and what he expects from some of these young players…

(on what he hoped to accomplish…)
“You’re trying to evaluate their skill level and talent level, to see how they play with their teammates and how everything fits. You just try to get some stuff going, so that there’s going to be a foundation put in place with system play, some D-zone reads. You’re look at their intelligence, their intellect, as to how they react to different situations.”

(on what he wanted to see from the prospects…)
“Whenever these kids are drafted, they show a lot of different skills. Most of them are very high-skilled with the puck, so the focus for me, and what I’m trying to get ingrained here in the first week, is going to be defensive coverage. We’ve talked about our defensive play, from the team standpoint last year and the number of goals against is too high. We’ve got to cut back on that and establish a foundation with the young guys, so that when they make the jump to the main camp next week, they might have a little bit of a leg up in that area.”

(on whether he’s more excited by good defensive plays…)
“I really like the offensive stuff. I like the skill level that some of these young guys are showing, but I wanted to see some good things on the defensive part of it. It’s a big adjustment when you from 5-on-5 to when we scrimmaged 4-on-4 and then the 3-on-3. There’s a lot of things that these young guys have to sort out and they did a real good job today.”

(on whether the emphasis shifts from skill development to competition…)
“You still want to see some skill development, but you’re really bringing out the competitive level of each of these individuals. I think we saw that in the 4-on-4, especially. There were some pretty good hits. Guys know that you’ve got to dig in, you’ve got to be gritty, you’ve got to battle hard along the boards, you’ve got to be heavy and strong on your stick in order to recover pucks. Again, that’s what 4-on-4 and 3-on-3 brings out. There will be some 2-on-2 stuff that happens just in the radius of the end zone. That’s a highly competitive drill and you’re going to see who really digs in.”

(on whether he sees a difference between first-year and second-year players…)
“Yeah, you do. … The younger guys who are here for the first time, there’s a lot of nervous energy. There’s pucks on their sticks that are bouncing off and ricocheting all over the place. Some of the passing was really off, but as you got to the second part of that first session, some better things happened. They settle down and that nervous energy is gone.”

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