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Rookie Camp Starts Saturday for Nashville

Nashville Predators President of Hockey Operations/General Manager David Poile announced today that a team of Nashville Predators prospects will open camp on Saturday, Sept. 10 with a on-ice practice at Centennial Sportsplex, and travel to Sunrise, Fla., for games against Tampa Bay Lightning and Florida Panthers prospects on Sept. 12 (5 p.m. CT vs. T.B.) and Sept. 13 (11 a.m. CT vs. FLA) at Saveology.com Iceplex.

This marks the fourth consecutive season Predators prospects have played a Southeast Division opponent during their camp. In 2008, they hosted the Atlanta Thrashers for two games at Bridgestone Arena, and in 2009 a team of rookies traveled to Duluth, Ga., for games at the Thrashers’ practice facility. Last season, Florida and Nashville rookies played a two-game set in Sunrise.

Prospects expected to attend the camp include first rounders Chet Pickard (2008), Ryan Ellis (2009) and Austin Watson (2010), second rounders Roman Josi (2008) and Charles-Olivier Roussel (2009), as well as top prospects Craig Smith – one of Team USA’s three best players at the 2011 World Championships – and Taylor Beck – who ranked among the Top 10 OHL scorers in each of the past two seasons.

Pickard, Ellis, Watson, Josi and Beck have all skated for the Admirals in the past. Other former Admirals include Gabriel Bourque, Ryan Flynn, Michael Latta, and Atte Engren.

The games and camp will precede the opening of 2011 Training Camp, which occurs Sept. 16, with testing and physicals. The Predators’ first day on the ice will be Saturday, Sept. 17 at Centennial Sportsplex and they will play eight preseason contests from Sept. 19-Oct. 1, including three at home (Sept. 24 vs. Winnipeg, Sept. 28 vs. Washington and Oct. 1 vs. Carolina).

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