News out of South Beach is that Florida Panthers starting goaltender is out for two weeks with a knee injury he suffered on New Year’s Eve against the Montreal Canadiens. Renaud Lavoie from RDS broke the news and added the disclaimer: “could be longer.” We’ll just let the “could be longer” part settle in for the Panthers fans out there.
Theodore has been a solid No. 1 netminder for the surprising Panthers this season. He’s given his new team a chance to win just about every start; it’s all Dale Tallon and Co. could have hoped for when they watched Tomas Vokoun walk away and signed Theodore on July 1. Don’t look now, but Theodore as a better goals against average and save percentage through the first three months of the season.
Head coach Kevin Dineen has already announced that Jacob Markstrom will get the start in Florida’s next game against the Islanders. The team plays back-to-back games against the Islanders and Devils, so they will probably need both the rookie Markstrom and inconsistent back-up Scott Clemmensen to step up their games as the Panthers continue to fight for the Southeast Division lead.
The Panthers doctors and coaches are remaining optimistic that Theodore’s injury won’t turn into a long-term problem. “We got our fingers crossed it’s nothing too serious,’’ head coach Kevin Dineen told the Sun-Sentinel. “Our doctors feel good that he’ll be back in the swing of things fairly soon.’’
Until then, hotshot prospect Markstrom will get another opportunity to impress at the NHL level.