Oh how "Training Camp" has changed.
There was a time when 'camp' was when, and how, players got into playing shape. Now it's merely a long weekend, and you better show up in near triathlete condition or risk being 'exposed' immediately.
It was tougher back in the day. Longer hours. More bodies. Fiercer battles for spots. And a lot less glamorous accommodations.
Camp was intimidating, and taxing, and sometimes felt endless.
Here is an Old School Training Camp vs Modern Glamor Camping or "Glamping" comparison - to the best of my recollection: (Yes I will sound like a bitter old man.)
Old School ... Drive, bus or maybe fly to Camp
"Glamping"... Catered 767 charter flight to an island
Old School... Physicals & Conditioning testing done same day, and right before, the first of two on-ice sessions on opening day of camp. Nothing like legs of lactic acid to power you through "go till you puke" conditioning drills.
"Glamping"... Physicals & Testing done a day or days prior to departing for the 'long weekend' to allow for recovery, or, at an appropriate time before the regular season starts.
Old School... 80-100 guys invited to camp, some with recent prison records. Cuts made early, often and by the bushel.
"Glamping"... Only the signed guys and top prospects invited. Cuts made using the 'complement sandwich' method - as per the CBA.
Old School... More fights than goals scored.
"Glamping"... Fighting non-existent until preseason games.
Old School... Four-hour rookie games between natural and geographic rivals thanks to fisticuffapaloosa
"Glamping"... Rookies taken to picturesque locals to compete in tournaments vs four or five other team's young talent.
Old School... Two on-ice sessions per day - for weeks. Gear drying effort - minimal
"Glamping"... 3 hours of organized activities, max - per CBA
Old School... Unsigned players invited to camp to 'challenge' incumbents for their spots. Gloves usually optional.
"Glamping"... Buzzword "camaraderie"
Old School... Meals - whatever you can find at the hotel or neighboring convenience store
"Glamping".... Meals - catered, multiple-choice, organic, and delicious
Old School... 12-14 Preseason, or as they were called, "exhibition", games, played all over North America via commercial airline travel
"Glamping"... 4-7 preseason games with limited chartered travel
Old School... Numbered pinnies worn over last seasons practice jerseys
"Glamping"... Fresh new Reebok practice jerseys with each players name and number on them
Old School... Non-veterans pick underwear and socks from "slightly used" sock and gaunch bins
"Glamping"... Cellophane-packed new undies for all.
Old School... 5 or 6 medical and equipment trainers to attend to the sea of bodies. perfect as long as you don't get hurt, don't need anything, and don't ask for anything
"Glamping"... 10-12 extremely attentive trainers and masseuses
Old School... Camp number sharpied on white tape above sliver of a stall
"Glamping"... Full color, name and number, laminated player plates above stalls
Old School... Vets get their own pattern sticks, all others bring their own or are offered "extras" and discards from veterans stash.
"Glamping"... Every guy has his own pattern and a stick rep only a text away if changes are needed
Old School... Paced pace
"Glamping"... Short and hard
Old School... Tougher, and did whatever they were told, and had a lot of fun
"Glampers"... Smarter, Better Conditioned, More Talented, Well Paid, Deservedly Pampered, and don't know how good they have it.
Posted on September 18, 2011 01:35 PM Email Razor
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