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Tuesday's Update

Know this is more of the same, but this is the story I wrote for MiamiHerald.com today. Since it takes a while to get these stories up, I figured I would post it here as well.

 

BY GEORGE RICHARDS

[email protected]

 

  Jessica Zednik, wife of injured Panthers' winger Richard Zednik, released a statement Wednesday thanking everyone involved for their help and saying Richard "continues to improve and we are encouraged each day."

Richard Zednik had his carotid artery severed by the skate of teammate Olli Jokinen in a freak accident during the third period of a game against the Buffalo Sabres. Zednik underwent emergency surgery at Buffalo General Hospital where he is currently staying. Zednik is expected to be released in the coming days.

   

"On behalf of Richard and our entire family, I want to thank the fans, his teammates, the Panthers and Sabres organizations, plus so many others for their prayers and well wishes," Jessica Zednik wrote.

"I especially want to thank the medical staff involved in his care and the Buffalo General Hospital for their tremendous support during this difficult time. Richard continues to improve and we are encouraged each day.

"We thank you for respecting our privacy and would ask everyone to continue to keep Richard in their thoughts over the next few days."

   

The Panthers play host to Montreal -- a team Zednik spent parts of five seasons with -- Wednesday night at BankAtlantic Center in Sunrise. The team will provide a large get-well banner for fans to sign that will be delivered to the Zednik's home in western Broward County.

 

According to the team, more than 15,000 fans have left messages for Zednik electronically at floridapanthers.com.

 

(*) The Panthers called up winger Rob Globke to take Zednik's roster spot on Tuesday, and on Wednesday had to recall center Stefan Meyer from the minors. Center Stephen Weiss missed the past two days of practice, although coach Jacques Martin said Weiss could still play Wednesday night against the Canadiens.

The Panthers lead the league in man-games lost to injuries at 263 coming into Wednesday's game. The Chicago Blackhawks are second at 241. Florida currently has seven players on the disabled list -- not including Weiss -- and expect to welcome back Rostislav Olesz (hand) on Friday.

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