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Tuesday's #FlaPanthers Notebook: Cats, Kulikov 'Not Close' to Deal ... Gudbranson Practices, Jovo Does Not ... Scrimmage Wednesday

TWITTER: @GeorgeRichards

Mike Santos, the Panthers' assistant general manager, said Tuesday morning that he hadn't spoken to Dmitry Kulikov's agent "in the past 48 hours.''

Kulikov, an unsigned restricted free agent, remained on the roster for Yaroslavl Lokamotiv of the KHL although he wasn't in the lineup for Tuesday night's game.

Santos said as a free agent, Kulikov was free to play in the KHL although the Panthers own his NHL rights. There has been talk that Kulikov is on his way back from Russia although Santos said he didn't know where he was.

Kulikov could be signed to an offer sheet from another NHL team but the Panthers would be able to match it.

"I wouldn't consider it close but we're going to keep working at it,'' Santos said. "I would like to get him signed.''

-- Defenseman Erik Gudbranson practiced with the Panthers but remains suspended by the team until he is cleared to play in a game.

Gudbranson injured his shoulder wakeboarding in Canada during the offseason and could start the season playing with Florida's AHL team in San Antonio.

"There's no plan right now,'' Santos said. "We're in a short training camp and it's a numbers game here right now. We'll see when he's ready to go. It could be the end of the week, it could be longer. I don't know.''

-- The Panthers will hold a full inter-squad scrimmage Wednesday night at their training facility. Dineen said goalies Jose Theodore and Scott Clemmensen would see extensive action.

-- Ed Jovanovski didn't practice Tuesday. "I want to make sure he's good to go on Saturday night,'' Dineen said.

-- When, Where: Wednesday, 7 p.m.; Saveology.com Iceplex, Coral Springs
-- Admission: Free
-- Directions: The Iceplex is located one-half mile east of the Sawgrass Expressway off Sample Road and Sportsplex Drive.
-- Season Opener: Saturday vs. Carolina; BB&T Center, Sunrise, 7:30 p.m.


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With only one week of practice/camp they all need to be on the ice every day unless it's an injury. Jovo has got to be dinged up a little bit or he would be on the ice. They arent "resting" him already. If Gudbranson is close then lift the darned suspension already. He's not cleared to play but cleared to practice so pay him. It may go a long ways toward being able to re-sign him when the time comes.
Kulikov is milking the "well I can just stay in the KHL" thing for everything it's worth. But then again, he may honetly prefer to stay in Russian for the remainder of this season. Wonder how the recent very signifigant tax increase to those making 1 million or more factors into some of these agents/players thinking. I doubt that the GM's are taking it into consideration.

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