Penguins defenseman Brian Strait (above) chatted with the media this morning:
Comparing his first prospect camp to his second:
"It’s definitely different this time around. I just went through my first pro season. So I’m kind of looked at as a leader in this camp now. You got a lot of younger guys, guys who just got drafted. Instead of being more of an observer the last couple of times, I got to go first in drills, go first in testing and show these guys what’s expected."
On his first professional season (2009-10):
"Training camp didn’t go as I planned but it gave me something to work on. Obviously it was my introduction to the professional game so I was a little shell-shocked at first. But once I got my legs under me at Wilkes-Barre, I got off to a pretty good start and had a pretty good season."
On his summer training:
"The summer is all about getting stronger. Right now, I’m in the gym four times a week. When it comes to on-ice, you try to stay off it a little bit. An 82-game schedule really gets you. Right now, it’s all about re-building what you lost in the regular season because you lost a lot of strength and you got to get it back somehow."
What he hopes to accomplish with this camp:
"This camp, this is just all about another impression. They want to see how I carry myself on the ice but off the ice more so and see if I’m doing the work in the gym. A lot of guys here probably haven’t been skating all that much. So they know on the ice, is probably not going to be where it’s going to be comes to training camp. But when it comes to the off ice testing, they want to see you’ve been working hard all summer long."
On the team's needs on defense at the NHL level:
"Yeah. I’m hoping I get the opportunity this year. Obviously last year, I was a rookie. I was younger. They wanted me to go through all the stages and develop that way. And it did wonders for me. I’m hoping to get my shot this year up here and get a couple games."
(Photo: Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins)