Islanders captain John Tavares and star Kyle Okposo were two of 34 players to take part in the National Hockey League's annual media held in Manhattan. The two teammates took part in interviews and promotional photo shoots. As John Tavares told NHL.com, the day is always an indicator that the start of training camp is right around the corner.
"It always signals the season is right around the corner, training camp is coming up, the buildup [to the season] is coming. It's an exciting time. You always enjoy increasing that buildup with all the media attention we get there [for a] couple days," he said.
Here are some of the highlights from the duo's media day trip:
Tavares spoke with ESPN's Katie Strang about the Islanders goaltending: "Since I've been there, goaltending has always been up in the air. There's always been a lot of competition, but this year it's kind of set before camp even starts. That's something that hasn't happened. Having a guy like Jaro, who's proven but still young, in the prime of his career and has a lot of experience -- whether it's playoffs or playing on some great teams with great seasons -- he's a very consistent goalie. He played a lot of minutes, he can handle a lot of work."
He later added: "[Chad] Johnson's been a really quality backup for quite some time and had a really good year last year," Tavares said. "Those two guys, to go into camp with those two goaltenders that are set and ready to go, it definitely will be a change for us and will be a good thing."
The Islander superstar also address his knee injury, which sidelined him for the remainder of the season after the Olympics. Tavares suffered a torn meniscus while playing for team Canada in the 2014 Winter Olympics.
Tavares said he was ready to go during an interview with NHL.com.
"I was cleared to play the first week of May," he said. "So if we were in the [Stanley Cup] Playoffs I'd be playing. I had a normal offseason and the injury has been put behind me for a good three months now."
Okposo also had his time in the spotlight. Speaking with NHL.com's Jon Lane, Okposo said this year's team was the most talented that has been assembled during his time as an Islander.
Just spoke with Kyle Okposo as part of the NHL's player media tour. Said this is the most talented #isles team since he's been there. — Jon Lane (@JonLaneNHL) September 8, 2014
"We want to give the fans that opportunity to be proud of their team and be loud again the last season there." - Okposo on Coliseum #Isles
— Jon Lane (@JonLaneNHL) September 8, 2014