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Felix Adamo / The Californian

Practicing at the Bakersfield Ice Sports Center, the Bakersfield Condors are gearing up for another season of exciting hockey.

The first practice is in the books as the Condors began their 15th season on Friday, opening training camp with a fast-paced hour-long session on the ice.

“It was just getting the legs going,” Condors coach Matt O’Dette said. “A lot of guys traveled long distances to get here. A lot of guys are wearing new gear so it’s kind of a day to get the kinks out, get the rust off. Just get the legs going again.”

All of the 23 players in camp passed physicals on Thursday evening and were on the ice where it was clear the Condors should be a much improved puck-moving team with lots of speed.

“I think definitely our experiencer since we have a lot of guys coming back,” Robby Dee said when asked of the team strengths.  We have two good goalies, a good D corps and we’re fast up front so that will be huge for us —  our speed. Getting all over the ice, creating chances.”

 O’Dette said the speed up front will be enhanced by an improved defense which is more adept at moving the puck quickly as well as being able to jump up offensively as well.

 Having nearly a dozen returning players has allowed O’Dette to get an early start on forward lines and defensive parings.

“Certain guys play well with other guys so we’ve got that going for us,” he said. “We can get some chemisty right off the hop. We added some good guys to that and we’re looking good so far.”