Finally, it’s here. Training camp for the Vegas Golden Knights.
Today, 60 players will report to City National Arena in Summerlin to take physicals, take photos for the team’s media purposes and begin the bonding process that they hope will culminate in a celebration in July with possession of the Stanley Cup. Actually, it will be 59 players on the ice Thursday morning for the first practice as forward Alex Tuch continues to heal from his shoulder surgery earlier this summer.
General Manager Kelly McCrimmon will address the media late this afternoon and we’ll have a full report posted on VegasHockeyNow later today on what McCrimmon had to say. He’ll likely be asked about the team’s vaccination rate for COVID-19, life in the organization without Marc-Andre Fleury, where he thinks Nolan Patrick fits in coach Peter DeBoer’s lineup and whether the Golden Knights are still hunting Jack Eichel.
The best part? The media session will be in person. No more Zoom calls. It should be a fun afternoon at CNA, but even more fun tomorrow when the Golden Knights hit the ice at 10 a.m. for their first practice.
Around the NHL …
ESPN.com: It was getting a little too close for Minnesota Wild fans but it got done. Kirill Kaprizov is staying in the State of Hockey after he and the team agreed to a five-year, $45 million extension which was announced Tuesday evening. Kirill the Thrill was threatening to stay in Russia and play in the KHL unless he got a max deal. But Wild GM Bill Guerin held firm on the term: five years, and eventually, Kaprizov said “Da.”
Sportsnet.ca: Yes, Kaprizov is in the fold. But other RFAs are still unsigned. Our friend Elliotte Friedman discusses the latest in his popular “32 thoughts” column (Yes, it’s now 32 with Seattle in the league)
On the National Hockey Now network …
NYIHockeyNow: Lou Lamoriello is not messing around. He’s laid down the law on the Island: No vaccination, no play. The Islanders are 100% compliant and it’s one less thing to worry about as camp opens. Maybe more important according to our colleague Christian Arnold, is the Isles are 100% healthy, and that includes captain Anders Lee.
PittsburghHockeyNow: The Penguins have been holding “Captains Skates” of late in preparation for training camp and veteran Brian Boyle has been among the participants. But the captain himself, Sidney Crosby, has not been on the ice as he heals up from wrist surgery. Dan Kingerski, leader of NHN Nation, has all the details.
VancouverHockeyNow: I think it’s safe to say everyone is looking forward to the Canucks-Seattle Kraken rivalry. John Forslund, the outstanding broadcaster who did play-by-play for NBC last year replacing the legendary Doc Emrick, is now the Kraken’s PXP man. He talked with our Rob Simpson about what to expect.
BostonHockeyNow: One storyline out of the Bruins’ training camp is whether Jack Studnicka can compete for a spot on the roster and perhaps be the B’s No. 2 center. According to colleague Joe Haggerty, Studnicka worked out all summer in Boston, adding 15 pounds to his frame.
WashingtonHockeyNow: Any player with the first name of “Bear” is going to attract attention. Especially when he’s a skating Bear. Sammi Silber caught up with Capitals prospect Bear Hughes, who is hoping to land a spot on the Caps’ fourth line.