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NEWS

Energy, Speed Evident As Second Day Of Training Camp Closes

By: Alex Kinkopf
 
 
The Roadrunners have completed their second day of training camp at Tucson Arena, Tuesday’s skate lasting just north of an hour as the players embodied a fast-paced, energetic style under the watch and direction of the team’s new animated coaching staff.
 
“Practices are real fast-paced this year so far,” Conor Garland mentioned. “Even at main camp they were fast-paced. They’re short, they’re hard, and I think that’s what guys like.”
 
“The new coaching staff is great,” Michael Bunting said. “All three, Ryno [Van Ryn], Slaney, Potzy {Potvin]. Ryno is very vocal out there, he takes the time to teach things, which is really good, so I’m very excited to see what comes with this coaching staff. It’s a new opportunity for everybody, a new slate for everyone, so we’ll see how it goes and hopefully it’s a good year.”
 
Forwards Tyler Gaudet and Michael Latta joined the team on the ice Tuesday morning following their assignments from the Coyotes’ training camp roster on Monday, upping the session’s attendance to 20 players and two goaltenders.
 
Those on the ice Tuesday, separated by position and listed in alphabetical order by last name, were as such:
 
Forwards:
  • Scott Allen, Michael Bunting, Trevor Cheek, Gabriel Desjardins, Conor Garland, Tyler Gaudet, Ryan Graham, Dennis Kravchenko, Zac Larraza, Michael Latta, Jens Looke, Lane Pederson, Mike Sislo, Artur Tyanulin
Defensemen:
  • Kyle Capobianco, Ryan Culkin, Joel Hanley, Dysin Mayo, Jalen Smereck, Cody Sol
Goaltenders:
  • Adin Hill, Michael Houser
 
As the skate wrapped up, it was announced that an additional five players – forwards Ryan MacInnis and Nick Merkley, along with defensemen Andrew Campbell, Kyle Wood, and Kevin Ekman-Larsson, were assigned to Tucson from the Coyotes’ training camp roster.
 
Those players are expected to be on the ice for Wednesday’s 11:00 AM session at Tucson Arena. The team will skate in Tucson through Thursday morning before traveling to Southern California for their two preseason games Friday night in Ontario and Saturday night in San Diego.
 
Forwards Conor Garland (2016-17 w/TUC: 55GP, 5G, 9A, 14PTS) and Michael Bunting (2016-17 w/TUC: 67GP, 13G, 15A, 28PTS) shared some thoughts following Tuesday’s skate:
 
Conor Garland, on how he’s feeling through training camp:
I’m feeling good. It’s been a while since we’ve played a game – I mean, obviously I played in a preseason game [with the Coyotes], but you want to get the games going. Camp is long, obviously if you go rookie camp, main camp, AHL camp, so you want to get games going and I know a lot of the guys are excited for [October 7th].
 
Garland, on the new crop of players at camp:
Everybody can skate, and that’s the system we’re going to play, fast-paced, and it’s going to help a lot this year that we’re going to have a fast team because it fits to our mold. I think we’re going to be an exciting team to watch and a hard team to play against.
 
Garland, on the new coaching staff:
We’ve worked with [Steve Potvin] a lot last year, so it’s nice having him on the staff here now so he can be down here with us everyday working with us after practices too. And same with [Mike Van Ryn], they’re both development guys, so we knew them before, so it’s awesome. It’s going to be a good year for us this year, we play an exciting style, and I think we’re going to have a good team this year.
 
Michael Bunting, on his summer, how he’s feeling at camp:
I’m feeling good. I put in a lot of work at home in Toronto, I worked with Dawn Braid a couple times a week during the summer, so that was good, I worked on my skating, which was one of my main focuses this summer. Just getting stronger, I think I put on a few pounds so I’m really excited for the season. Training camp [with the Coyotes] went well, I came in with a good mindset and I worked hard, so now it’s time to come down here, work hard, and hopefully get a chance to get back up there.
 
Bunting, on the new additions to the camp roster:
It’s going to be exciting. It’s a very young team, and it’s a very fast one – that’s definitely one thing I can say about us. It’s going to be very exciting to see us out there during games and play with our speed, and there’s also a lot of skill, so I think it’s just going to be a totally different team than last year.