In addition, head coach Travis Green was pleasantly surprised by Danila Klimovich and Karel Plasek.
The first and second groups faced each other, with pride and a few laps on the line. Well, that and a potential place in Canucks roster for anyone looking to make their way on the roster. Let’s take a look at some of the stories that emerge from day two.
Game situation: fans in the building
The Canucks were clearly happy to be in a game situation, carried by the 1,000 fans in attendance. It was a welcome return to some semblance of normalcy.
“It smelled like popcorn,” said Jack Rathbone. “I think I was more excited about it knowing the fans were back. “
“A little non-fake noise is good,” Tanner Pearson said of the fans’ return. “It’s good to find a certain normality, that’s for sure. Hopefully this continues to move in the right direction and we can get Rogers back on track. “
While it might not have been a real game, it was pretty close.
“It’s good to kind of get back into play readings,” Rathbone said. “You can practice as much as you want and do two-on-two, three-on-three, four-on-four, but once you start to get back into the flow of a real game, I think that’s when- there that you start to be able to grow and develop and actually work on certain things.
There was something special about the vibe, especially with dozens of kids with their signs, banging on the glass to get the attention of their favorite players.
At the end of the second session on the ice, Tyler Motte took to the ice with a few other players recovering from injuries – Carson Focht and Guillaume Brisebois – and walked over to a group of kids, carrying an extra stick. He pointed to a lucky child and threw the stick at him over the glass.
A moment later, Zack MacEwen did the same.
This, for me, was the highlight of the second day.
Klimovich and Plasek left their mark
Canucks head coach Travis Green will answer player questions during training camp and give his opinion, but he’s rarely volunteered. But, when asked if any players have surprised him so far at camp, Green offered rare praise.
“Our young pick in last year’s draft, second round, [Danila] Klimovich looks good, ”Green said. “He’s a big kid, skates well … I thought [Karel] Plasek had a great game today. Again, a youngster, it’s not always easy to stand out but I liked his energy and he looked like he could play. Still, it’s still hard for a young guy to come in and do a lot of plays, so you kind of project with some guys.
Klimovich certainly stood out on the ice, stringing together several hard punches during the exercises with an impressive clearance. With his size and his skate, he was able to retreat in battles and create space for himself.
“I like all the battles, I like the speed, I really like the small ice,” Klimovich said via a translator.
As for his shot, Klimovich aims high: “I try to compare myself in the future with Kucherov and Ovechkin.
Plasek was a pleasant surprise. His speed jumped immediately, but he showed skillful hands that left some of the defenders on the ice scrambling to adapt as he cut inside on the run.
Plasek hasn’t produced much in the Czech league, but looking at him it’s clear why the Canucks signed him to a contract. He has the tools to build a future in the NHL. Granted, he’ll have to add a bit more strength – Jett Woo buried him against the boards on one particular exercise – but the potential is there.
DiPietro on the goalkeepers’ “bag skate”
All eyes might have been on the skaters during the infamous skating bag on day one of training camp, but the goalies were working hard on their own version, which featured quick, repeated movements around the crease.
When it was suggested that their “bag skate” was as hard as the skaters had to endure, Mikey DiPietro didn’t hesitate.
“My hips would be okay with you,” DiPietro said with a smile. “Hips seize up and everything like that. It’s a goalie bag skate, so I think I’ll make up a phrase – we have Clarkie over there. “
DiPietro’s future for the season looks pretty bright: he will start for the Abbotsford Canucks in the AHL and play as many games as he can, hopefully catching up on the fact that he has played virtually no games. last season. DiPietro, however, doesn’t look too far ahead.
“I’m just going to take it day to day. Sometimes when you have plans things happen, ”said DiPietro. “If anything, that’s what last year taught me – to just enjoy the moment.
“I had a good training today, I had another training tomorrow, and then we will take it day by day.
Homage of Halak to Pavol Demitra
Jaroslav Halak is just the fourth Slovakian player to play for the Vancouver Canucks. Two of the other three Slovak players, Jozef Balej and Lubomir Vaic, have combined for just 10 games.
The third, however, is one of the greatest Slovak hockey players of all time, who has played 97 games for the Canucks: Pavol Demitra.
Halak has played with Demitra in several international tournaments including the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, where Demitra topped the tournament with 10 points in 7 games.
Tragically, a plane crash claimed the lives of Demitra and his Lokomotiv Yaroslavl teammates in 2011. Halak will pay tribute to his teammate this season with the backplate of his mask, which bears Demitra’s name and number.
This is not the first time that Halak has paid homage to Demitra. In 2011, after the plane crash, Halak changed the backplate of his mask to a painting of Demitra celebrating a goal at the 2010 Olympics. Halak was playing for the St. Louis Blues at the time, with whom Demitra played eight seasons.
“Obviously, it’s always difficult to talk about it” declared Halak to Brendan Batchelor of Sportsnet 650. “It’s been 10 years, but I just want to pay tribute to him and his family… people know him here and how awesome he was. “