Everyone acts like training camp is like going back to school, but it's more like the first episode of the new season of your favourite show. They need to remind you who all the characters are before they can get to the plot.
First up is the family patriarch. This is not one of those shows with a mother or even a love interest that shows up once a week and then vanishes; this is all about the men. The antidote to that is. as always, Women's Hockey Wednesday, where you can stay tuned into all the goings on in the women's game.
Lamoriello had a lot to say in his typical short, succinct bursts. Some of it you know. Joffrey Lupul will start the season on IR. Frederik Andersen is still not quite ready.
The news is that the players in the World Cup of Hockey who will be out of the playoff portion of the tournament will not fly out to Halifax, they will join camp when it returns to Toronto. Those players are: Roman Polak, Milan Michalek, Auston Matthews, Morgan Rielly, Leo Komarov, James van Riemskyk.
If Lamoriello is the patriarch, Laich is the team dad. We've already seen him raising up some of the kids, and if you listen to his scrum, you'd be forgiven for thinking he was one of the coaches.
Next you meet the new character, the cool uncle who will sneak the kids beer, but don't worry, it will turn out to be the no-alcohol kind.
He's a fun and personable guy, and he is just the right about of chagrined by becoming a short-haired, stand-up veteran good influence.
He's the geeky brother that the writers like more than the fans. He's got more books coming out, we learn, and he is ready for the new season. This inclusion in the official video seems like a stamp of approval, more than a sign he has interesting things to say.
He's the slightly troubled brother, just wayward enough to be interesting. He talks about his attitude in a reassuring way, and nowhere in this video will you see the following quote:
Kadri on Lupul:"I think he's ready to go. I think he's excited about the season.Ultimately its their decision & we just play hockey" #Leafs— Dhiren Mahiban (@dcmahiban) 22 September 2016
He's the cute kid who has a surprisingly deep voice all of a sudden. On the one hand, it's great he's growing up and putting on weight. On the other, you have to wonder how soon they bring in a new cute kid character.
He seems properly humble and not taking anything for granted, but it sure looks like he's going to have a major role this season. If he doesn't work out and turns into Wesley Crusher, he can always be "sent to the academy" for a while. I don't think that's likely though.
Now that that's out of the way, onto the plot! Camp moves east and we have your roster and schedule right here.