Remarkably, the Rapids got out of Colorado with little incident en route to Houston, after a snowstorm hit the Denver area on Thursday night/Friday morning. The first group of Rapids players arrived in Texas around noon and were greeted with 70 degree temperatures - about 55 degrees warmer than what they had left in Denver. A bus to the hotel, a quick lunch, some brief down time, and then the group headed to the training field.
The team worked for about 70 minutes at the Houston Amateur Sports Park, doing a relatively high-intensity session that consisted of a few warm-up drills followed by a possession game. With two seven-player teams, two neutral players in the middle, and a neutral target player on each end, the group worked hard and took advantage of the weather and grass field.
A total of 20 players were part of the first group that trained, consisting mostly of more veteran players. Of that group, only Shane O'Neill and Chris Klute did not take part fully, as both worked primarily on fitness off to the side. The second group arrived at the hotel around 3.30pm and many did fitness work on their own.
Pablo Mastroeni addressed the group in a full team meeting in the evening at the hotel, laying out the expectations for the week in Houston. He emphasized that the coaching staff had set up a schedule for the entire preseason, and that everything was geared toward the season opener in about six weeks. After the meeting, the players headed out for dinner in groups.
PRACTICE ON SATURDAY
The team will train at 10am on Saturday morning at Houston Amateur Sports Park, the final session before Sunday's scrimmage against the Dynamo.
It's worth a look: Rapids defender Shane O'Neill took to twitter to taunt Seattle Sounders defender DeAndre Yedlin ahead of the Super Bowl this Sunday. Maybe a friendly wager is on the cards?