The Washington Capitals 2005 first-round draft pick Joe Finley has packed more into three days of Development Camp than most people do all week. He’s put an Arlington restaurant (presumably) out of business, shared his daily thoughts with OFB, and engaged in a fight during a scrimmage. Finley is also the kind of man that takes time to speak with fans, offers autographs and pictures, and gives interviews between giving interviews.
After finishing up speaking with another media outlet, Finley had time to kill so I [hurriedly] spoke with him about Day 3’s contest.
Rock the Red: What are your thoughts on the scrimmage?
Joe Finley: It was pretty good. It was a decent pace, it was a good first day. It’ll definitely get better as we go on. I was happy with some things I did, other things not so happy.
RtR: What aspects of your game will you try to work on for tomorrow’s game?
JF: More timing. Between Orlov and I, we need to communicate better in the neutral zone so we’re not giving up some plays. A couple times you saw me coming back where the guy was wide. What they did was they rotated the puck twice, and we really haven’t worked on that. Instead of our guys just holding their lanes, we were swinging the opposite way and got burned.
RtR: How about the defensive zone?
JF: I have to be stopping and starting on the puck better. Me specifically, after making good contact I have to go get back in position and not standing and watching. It was my first game since November 21st, so I’ll keep getting better as I play more.
RtR: It must have felt great to get your legs back under you and get back in the flow.
JF: Oh, yeah! The pace of a game is so much different than practice. you try to mimic that with interval drills, but you’re never going to get exactly what you want.
Finley definitely seems more interested in progressing his game this week than at last years’ camp. He’s constantly speaking with coaches, and other players, and in my whirl-wind of an interview – he seems to recognize his faults, and how to correct them. Only time will tell if he will make an impact on the Bears’ roster the season, but we’re pulling for him… and locking up our refrigerator.