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David Booth Flying Home: Randy Sexton Updates Condition

Booth2 Panthers winger David Booth has been released from the hospital after suffering a concussion last night in Philly. Booth should be back in South Florida today.

Philadelphia captain Mike Richards, who administered the controversial hit, will not be suspended. Sexton and the Panthers are not pleased. According to Sexton, he spoke with some folks in NHL hockey operations who went through their decision step by step. He's still ticked. ''We have to move on,'' Sexton said this afternoon.

Steve Gorten and myself spoke to Sexton today via speakerphone at baggage claim and it sounds like Booth is doing OK. The Panthers are going to keep Booth under wraps and keep a close watch on him because they know ''how committed, how intense'' he is. Sexton said Booth is the kind of player who won't feel good ''and think 100 pushups will be the answer.'' So they are going to closely monitor what Booth does. He may be out of the lineup for a few weeks.

Sexton also said that Booth has been in contact with former teammates and friends who have been through concussions before. They have told him to just take his time with this. I'm sure Cory Stillman will pass that on too; I think he rushed back last year.

According to Sexton, Booth was alert and the two had a good conversation about a variety of subjects. The Richards hit, apparently, did not come up. Sexton just wanted to talk to Booth about a bunch of stuff to see how alert he really was. ''I was pleasently surprised,'' Sexton said. ''We talked about a bunch of things.''

Sexton also kept Booth's family updated on things last night as they were watching the game on Center Ice.

-- No new update on Radek Dvorak other than he has a ''lower body injury.'' I'm saying its a left knee. We shall see. Sexton said he doesn't think Dvorak will be in the lineup Wednesday against the Sens. I concur with that.

-- Sexton also said he and the coaches were going to gather (probably tomorrow) to decide Dmitry Kulikov's status with the team. With the team 2-6-1, it might be best for him to go back in my opinion. No, he's not going to learn anything more in the QMJHL, but this place is close to imploding. It might just get ugly around here. This season has Titanic written all over it.

-- Roster moves won't be made until after Rochester's game tonight. Speaking of the Amerks, Jason Garrison will be in the lineup for them tonight as he was sent back.

-- I know a lot of people are questioning this team's toughness after last night and you are not alone. I spoke to a number of players about what happened last night and will have something on this in tomorrow's Miami Herald. Pick one up, would ya?

-- The team took today off and will have a rare afternoon practice tomorrow at The Ice. Should be on the ice around 2 p.m. So skip lunch and join us will you? I'll bring the sandwiches*.

(*) George will not be bringing sandwiches. Well, maybe one. For him. From LaSpadas. Ummmm....LaSpadas.

David Booth photo courtesy Associated Press