SOUTH BEND, Ind. (AP) - The Blackhawks have arrived in South Bend for training camp less than three months after winning the Stanley Cup Championship.
"I'm just going to say right off the bat: What a place. It's amazing. We're excited to be here," Blackhawks coach Joel Quenneville said of Notre Dame.
"I was thinking Notre Dame, old school. It's got the tradition and everything is brand new around here."
Hawks General Manager Stan Bowman is a 1995 Notre Dame graduate.
"It was the best four years of my life," Bowman said of his time at Notre Dame. "it's pretty special to be back here."
"Notre Dame Hockey has the kind of facility that can rival any other facility in the country."
Chicago will begin practice at Notre Dame on Thursday and stay in South Bend until Sunday evening. Saturday and Sundays practice at open to the public but already sold out.
The Blackhawks are feeling better about their chances of repeating than the last time they won the Stanley Cup.
The Blackhawks won the NHL title in 2010, and then lost several key players mainly because of salary-cap issues. The departed included goalie Antti Niemi and key defenseman Dustin Byfuglien, and the result was a first-round playoff loss.
Fresh off their second title in four seasons, the Blackhawks arrived in northern Indiana on Wednesday and will begin training camp with most of the key players back from last year's team.
Captain Jonathan Toews says the players understand there will be a lot of talk about repeating, but he says it's too early to talk about that. The last team to win back-to-back Cups was Detroit in 1997 and 1998.