5 Takeaways From Avalanche Veterans Informal Practice

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1. Nathan MacKinnon is a perfectionist

Nathan MacKinnon and Tyson Barrie skate to the boards after completing a drill. -Photo by Austin Manak

By now, you’ve probably heard about MacKinnon’s off-season training program… how he is bigger, faster, and stronger; primed to take over the league this year. The main thing I noticed from Nathan, aside from the ridiculous skill level (seriously his saucer passes made me start drooling down the front of my shirt), was that any time he made a small mistake, he was very hard on himself. There were several instances where he slammed his stick in frustration, or would back into the boards with authority and a disgruntled look on his face.

To me, it didn’t look like an attitude problem, but a guy who wants to be great. His expectation is to reach that elite level, and he is in the zone and very demanding of himself when he’s on the ice.

One final thought on MacKinnon. The speed. Yep, it’s still there. I would love to post an action shot of MacKinnon, but they all came out blurry. I doubt he plans on slowing down for my photography efforts, so I guess I would have to upgrade in the camera department. Oh well. Oh wait, I did manage to snag one non-blurry pic of MacKinnon, but it has awkward written all over it. I guess I’ll post it anyways…

Bonus MacKinnon hydration pic! -Photo by Austin Manak