When the Dallas Stars open training camp at the new American Airlines Center Wednesday morning, so, too, will most of the Utah Grizzlies.
Of the 55 players competing for spots on the National Hockey League squad, approximately 15 will end up skating for the Grizz this season. The balance of Utah's roster will be comprised of five or players from the Florida Panthers, as well as veteran John Purves.
"We're really excited to get back in it," said first-year Grizz coach Don Hay. "We feel with the players we're getting from Dallas and Florida that we'll have a very competitive hockey team."
Hay, who is in Texas assisting the Stars, helped oversee the organization's 25-man rookie/development camp last week. And he'll be on the sidelines coaching Saturday afternoon when Dallas prospects square off against Florida in a game prior to a Stars/Panthers preseason contest.
Such interaction should give Hay a running start when the Grizz open their training camp Sept. 26 at the Acord Ice Arena. Utah's workouts include a Sept. 29 intra-squad game at the facility, which will be open to the public.
After seven seasons in the now defunct International Hockey League, the franchise makes its debut in the American Hockey League Oct. 5 at Grand Rapids. Following three games on the road, Utah's home opener is slated for Oct. 13 against Milwaukee. The Grizz are celebrating their fifth season