ST. PAUL, Minn. (KMSP) - At development camp Thursday, the Minnesota Wild put drills to the side as it was finally time to scrimmage.
"Just trying to make an impression, first impression and show them what you're all about," said Jack McBain, a Wild third-round pick.
Teams Green and White featured 42 players both made up of draft picks and free agent invites looking to show that their skills are good enough for NHL competition. For first-round pick Filip Johannson, he says he was happy to be back on the ice, but admitted he was a bit rusty.
"I think I started terrible, like you're not used to playing games in the summer time, but I enjoyed it, said Johannson. “It was a lot of fun to have a lot of people here watching."
Some of the players have been here before and for others, it's their first taste of an NHL camp and whether they remain a part of Minnesota's organization or not, the experience, they say is invaluable.
“You always wonder what pro guys do on a day-to-day basis and it's good to get the experience and learn from the goalie coaches and the staff here, so it's just learning,” said Hunter Shepard, free agent invitee. “You got to come and pay attention and just take in as much as possible."
Fans at Xcel Energy Center got a firsthand look at the potential future of the team and while it's too early to tell who will be a part of the roster moving forward, the players say just getting the opportunity is all you can ask for.
"This is what I'm living for, I love the game and of course it's good to have a break in the summer, but you want to be on the ice and today I could do that," said Johannson.
Team White emerged victorious today over Team Green. Development camp is scheduled to resume Friday and the team will have one more scrimmage which is scheduled for the final day of camp on Sunday.