The best athletes in the world are typically the ones who prepare themselves the most. Anybody can be a great hockey player when things are going their way, but how do you respond to adversity? How do you get your body and mind ready for when things get tough? For a guy like Brady Tkachuk, how do you prepare yourself from getting your fingers chomped on like a pack of Twizzlers when you find yourself in a scrap with Brendan Lemieux?
He's the captain of an Ottawa Senators team that has a lot of high hopes heading into this season. They sign Claude Giroux in free agency. They make a trade for Alex DeBrincat and now there are already talks of him signing an extension in Ottawa. Norris, Chabot, and Stutzle are locked in long term. Things are looking great in Ottawa right now but you still have to be prepared for anything.
That's why Brady Tkachuk is spending his preseason getting his arm mauled by a police K9 in training.
There are a lot of rats in the NHL, but none of them are going to have a more ferocious bite than a German Shepherd.
I already had some pretty high expectations for Ottawa coming into this season. But when your captain is voluntarily getting attacked by a police dog right before the season starts? That tells me everything I need to know about this Senators team. They're about to be the biggest group of lunatics in the Atlantic Divison. Toronto isn't going to know how to deal with that energy. Montreal isn't going to know how to deal with that energy. Boston isn't going to know how to deal with that energy. Tampa isn't going to know how to deal with that energy. The Ottawa Senators are a lock for the playoffs this year and you can take that to the bank.
P.S. -- Giroux to DeBrincat is going to be a cheat code.