Capitals’ Head Coach Todd Reirden Calls Saturday’s Training Camp Scrimmage A “Good Day For Us”

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On Saturday afternoon, Washington Capitals head coach Todd Reirden spoke to the media on a Zoom call following the group practices and scrimmage on the fifth day of training camp in Phase 3 of the NHL’s Return to Play Plan. He discussed how today’s scrimmage went, defenseman Michal Kempny back on the ice, and familiarity with forward Daniel Sprong.

Reirden called today’s scrimmage a “good day for us”. He said players were “excited about today” as it was the first time for 5-on-5 action. The bench boss complimented players and how the overall pace was fantastic. More scrimmages will take place, especially for special teams. He said it’s “fun” to watch a scrimmage as a coach. Reirden noted some staredowns occurred adding, “Here we go! We’re getting back to normal.”

On Kempy, Reirden said the 29-year old Czech is “trending in that direction” to being a top player again. Kempny’s skating and power are getting “back to where it was” after having hamstring surgery in April 2019. Reirden did not expect Kempny to be completely back to 100% until after a full year of recovery. In fact, Reirden did see Kempny wince at times throughout the season when playing or during a bad hit to the boards.

The Capitals’ head coach noted Kempny is “getting better and comfortable every day”. He was paired with John Carlson today and was successful. Reirden did mention he will continue to evaluate him and play around with defensive pairings. “[I’m] happy to see he is healthy and back at it with us,” Reirden added about Kempny.

At the NHL Trade Deadline in February, the Capitals traded defenseman Christian Djoos to the Anaheim Ducks in return for Sprong. Reirden already has familiarity with the 23-year-old Dutch right-winger after seeing him in Pittsburgh and in Anaheim from past years.

Reirden said it was “good to be able to watch him” and complimented his size and “release around the net”. Sprong scored two goals for Team Red in today’s scrimmage; Team Red won 3-1. “He’s had a good start to this camp,” Reirden said and called it a “valuable experience” for him.

By Della Young

About Della Young

Della Young is a fiction writer based out of the Northern Virginia/Washington, D.C. area and an online student attending Full Sail University. She got her start in the entertainment industry at age seven as an actress. At the young age of nine, Della wrote a psychological thriller short story that sparked her interest in creative writing. She comes from a family of big Capitals fans and became inspired to start writing for sports. In her spare time, Della enjoys photography, traveling, and working on both sides of the camera. Follow Della on Twitter: @dellayoung
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