Mike Babock has a message for those looking to improve their fitness and find a place to train at the start of the NHL season: get to it.
The head coach of the Toronto Maple Leafs has been a part of the club’s training facilities since 2007, helping coach the team to a record of 73-17-9 in the past two seasons and earning a spot on the Hockey Hall of Fame.
He said the first thing he does every morning is sit down with his players and help them get to grips with what the season has in store.
He also said it takes time to adjust to the new league, but the process is not that tough and it has been worth it.
“I’ve been in a league where people are competing, where there’s a lot of pressure and everyone wants to be at the top of the list.
I don’t know that you can say that’s a bad thing.
I think you get used to it,” Babcock said Tuesday on Sportsnet 590 The Fan.”
I think everybody wants to get to the top and get a chance to win.
It’s a great feeling.
But it’s not a big pressure to get in the NHL.
And if you don’t, it doesn’t work out very well.”
Babcock, who coached the Leafs for eight seasons, said he didn’t expect to have a change of scenery as soon as he arrived in Toronto.
“It’s just a matter of getting used to the environment and the people,” Babock said.
“And the players, too, they’re just great.
I’ve been there for nine years and have known the players.
They’re all really great people.”
He said it was important to get his players used to a new team, which is something they’ve never had to do before.
“You have to get used it to the game, but also understand how the game is structured and how the way that the players are playing and how that the coaches are coaching,” Baback said.
“And the other thing is, you have to find your way to the rink, get used not only to the ice but also the way you play the game.”
Basketball star LeBron James, who won two NBA championships with the Cleveland Cavaliers and was the face of the Cleveland logo from 2007 to 2012, was among those who called Babcock to offer his thoughts on the upcoming season.
“My favorite thing about playing with LeBron is his competitiveness and how he’s able to play so hard, but he’s so competitive,” Babick said.
“(He’s) really good.
I love playing with him.”
Babele added that he’s a fan of James, but said he’ll be ready for whatever the situation may be.
“He’s one of the great players of all time.
He’s a phenomenal player, a fantastic leader,” Babac said.