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Coming Together

12/01/2012, 9:00am CST
By Alec Schimke

Coach Sullivan shared his thoughts after Day 1 of main camp

Following the first day of main camp on Friday, coach Joe Sullivan shared his thoughts about the start of camp with Alec Schimke of MNSwarm.com.

On seeing everybody during the first day of main camp:

“Well it’s great to get all of the guys back together. Rookie camp was great, but it was exactly that. When you take the cream of the crop of that group and mix it in with our veterans, it was great to see them probably within a half an hour create some chemistry. We had a really energetic group of guys. It was relaxing to see them after all of this time not knowing how they would bond to see them really come together so quickly, and their work ethic was second to none. Last year was great, and this year we’ve got another nine draft picks that are out here right now grinding out, all looking for a spot, and all working confidently behind that thought. I look for even more from them on Saturday.”

 

On if he expected the team to gel so fast on the first day:

“The group that we have is a bunch of good people; they’re leaders amongst themselves. I knew they would bring the other guys in quickly because we’ve already talked about what our expectations are this year. We haven’t dialed into all of the smaller details that it takes to get into those goals, but it’s very clear that these guys aren’t going to accept the way that last year finished too lightly. They’ve all talked about how much harder it was going to be and how excited they are with the talent pool that we just added. I’m looking forward to it, it’s going to be a great season.”

 

On the message sent to the team on the first day:

“Every general manager, every head coach is going to be saying to their teams, ‘Hey we have to work hard, we have to be the hardest working team.’ Last year, I believe we lived that every day. We just have to take it to the next level and understand we do need to sweat the small stuff. We’re a good team, we’re a young team that is energetic and athletic, but it’s the small things that will get to you. That’s the job I put on these guys is to really pay attention to detail. For me and our coaching staff, it’s really making sure as we make mistakes, we work through them together. We don’t let anybody get too down, we don’t let anybody get too overconfident as the season flows. If we do our job, they do their job, we’re going to have a really good year.”

 

On if he was satisfied with the effort on Day 1:

“Absolutely.  The effort could always be a little better. Where the effort didn’t seem to be there, I think it was because of inexperience. I would challenge anybody to see a better camp than what we just saw today. The effort was there; the work ethic is 110-percent. Everybody is just pushing each other up the floor.”

 

On if Saturday’s exhibition game against Colorado will be treated as a learning experience or if it will have a game-type atmosphere:

“We’re treating it as we would prepare for a real game because I think it’s incumbent on us to get these guys prepared like it’s a real game. I’m not putting pressure on anyone to overachieve or for somebody to do some crazy things out there. What I’m looking for is to see how these guys pick each other up. There’s going to be times in any game when three or four goals go in against us. It’s early in the year, but how do we react to that? Are guys to pick each other up or are we going to get down? I don’t have room for guys that are going to get down. I need the guys that are going to understand that three or four goals in this game mean nothing. As far as Colorado is concerned, I think they’re experienced enough to just want to get their rookies going, but they might have a bit of bitter taste, we did finish their season off. Everybody is going to remember that, no different than we would with Edmonton.”

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