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PANTHERS NOTEBOOK: Vertseeg Hurt in Loss to Lightning ... Nothing Yet on Kovalev

TWITTER: @GeorgeRichards

The worst news out of Tuesday could come in the following days when Kris Vertseeg's right knee is evaluated.

Versteeg -- who scored Florida's first goal 13 ticks into the second -- went sprawling after making contact with Radko Gudas and stayed on the ice in pain for a few minutes before being helped into the locker room.

"Sometimes when it rains it pours,'' said Jack Skille. "That's the nature of the game. You have to battle through it.''

-- Mike Santos said there has been no resolution to the Alex Kovalev situation. Kovalev is on the Panthers roster but is no longer with the team and is free to find another team.

Kovalev, 40, could also retire.

"I’m thinking that there will be something really soon, though,'' Santos said. "We’re not pushing him. He deserves the respect after the career he’s had to make up his own mind and do the things that he needs to do.”


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Give me a break Santos!You should have given a 5 million dollar offer to Garrison instead of wasting it on an old plug.Markstrom is NOT NHL quality now and I doubt he ever will be.You give a retread like Kuba 4 million a year for 2 years?To frustrated to even post anymore.Goodnite Mrs Calabash wherever you are.

I forgot to mention the 4 recent first choice picks of the Panthers that were no good.Anthony Stewart,Olescz,Ellerby,and now Markstrom!

It would have taken a lot of money to convince Garrison not to go home to Vancouver. He grew up in the area and a Canuck fan.

First two goals was bad defensive play by our D and Forwards, not Markstrom's fault.

Purchase a clue.

Also, Markstrom was a #2 pick, not a #1. Purchase 2 clues....

Litespeed you are ignorant if you think Garrison would have made a difference to this team this year had he been on the team.
He did not want to play here. He wanted to go to Vancouver and his 6 points on a very good team this year should tell you he is not worth the money.

I will say this again - no team in this league can go through the amount of injuries we have had without suffering (Our whole first line is gone plus some of our best defensmen). Case in point; look at Montreal, they where last in the east last year and first this year and injuries was a big reason for that.

The short season is just a train-wreck injury wise and we all have to understand that the rest of the year is going to be planing, preparation and practice for next season.

I for one is looking forward to next season. In the meantime I am watching the development of our talented rookies and prospects. Markstrom is going to be fine after going through the meat-grinder this season. It should build some character.

While Garrison may not be worth the money, I don't think the signing of Kuba filled the void when Garrison left as a free agent. I can't recall...did Tallon trade Garrison to Vancouver or did Garrison become a UFA and walk away? If the latter, then Tallon didn't handle it well.

Hey, let's not blame all our problems on the injuries. Yes, we've sustained a ton, but in all reality, last year was a fluke season whereby multiple players were having career years, which catapulted us to a playoff spot in a weak division. This is Tallon's 3rd year of the blueprint. This season is over...I'm looking forward to the trade deadline, NHL draft, July 1, and then next season.

I agree but I think Kuba overachieved and looked better than he was thanks to his partner just like Garrison. Playing with the Norris winner (Eric Karlsson) will do that.
I believe Garrison was an UFA and I don't see what Talllon could have done differently. Trading him before the deadline would have put the post season in jeopardy.

Garrison was a contract-year wonder. Kuba was also. I don't blame Tallon for getting stop-gaps until his kids are ready...and ready they will be. Nick Bjugstad and Corban Knight are constant names in the Hobey Baker award convo, Vincent Trochek is KILLING it in Juniors, Alex Petrovic will make all of us forget about Garrison. Markstrom will keep getting better the more he faces NHL quality shooters. King Henrik didn't take over the world in his first year, neither did Tim Thomas, nor Marty Brodeur. Goalies take time. I still have faith in Tallon.

Don't forget Campbell's league worse -17 +/-. Hey KD, stop playing him 30 mins a game and let someone else like Yonkman get some more ice time, he can't be any worse than Campbell

Hey Luis and Chris-Learn how to read kids-you must work for Panthers-I said Markstrom was one of Panthers FIRST CHOICE NOT FIRST ROUNDERS-Markstro was first player in 2nd round which was our first choice since Martin had traded away our first rounder to get Voukon.Markstrom cant make difficult saves period.Defense was at fault but he overcommited and Lecavier went right around him.Goal 2 was Goc lapse in covering 17 from tampa.Would have been a tougn save but once again Markstrom fell down covering other side of goal.Goal 3 was TOTALLY Markstroms fault as he did not seal off pipe.You both need to get a clue!I said they should have offered Garrison at least 5 million instead of 4 million.Garrison allready has 4 goals at Vancouver and is a very good defenceman.We could have at least matched Vancouvers deal.Please comment on giving away Ellerby for a 5th rounder?Please comment on waiving Graubner and Carter who are both playing well for The Islanders and devils!Also Markstrom was NOT Tallons pick-it was the pick of Jacque Martins.

If you know anything about hockey then you cant deny Garrisons shot caused teams to concentrate on him and that opened up our power play.Not giving Samuelson a 2 yr contract also hurt our power play.This group wants to run the franchise on the cheap.Tallon will get disgusted and leave in 2 years.Ownerships focus in on SSE and the possibility of a casino being approved on this site from what I have read.Hey Luis and Chris--do you work for the Panthers?

You guy concentrate too much on this Garrison guy. One player won't and wouldn't make a difference. It's the big picture that need looking at.This organization is and has been a joke for well over 10 years from the scouting team to the GM.

Garrison wanted to play with Canucks. He wasn't going to sign with Panthers. He is not getting the goals in Vancouver because they are not using him wisely and he doesn't have Campbell dishing him the puck... Markstrom is being rushed into service and there is too much pressure on him. They should send him down to AHL, the pressure is too much being that Clem is a disater. They need to trade for a mid-level goalie to finish the year.

Being rushed? He's been in the minos for 4 yrs now

I agree with litespeed 100%. Panthers are running the team on the cheap. True they got Tallon and a good coach but they should have offered Garrison 5 mil at least matched the Canucks. Why go on about Garrison? Because it was a combo that worked!!! Why not make every effort to continue with success?? We have NO power play and it's dismal going to the "noise box" and sighing everytime we get a PP because it is so inept. Tedious for real hockey fans and the players. You could see the energy in the players last night...heads down a lot, especially after the putrid 3rd goal, all the energy left the team. What we have here is a huckster ownership with the head noise maker himself Yormacky kicked out of Tampa (ever go to game in Tampa? you should what a pleasure). The players Know it fellow hockey lovers.

I'm going to trust scouts that do this for a living and not some blowhards on an internet forum that couldn't stop a puck if my 4 year old shot it at them. Those same scouts, have only ranked Markstrom as the 3rd best goalie prospect in the league, but yes, give up on a 23 year old 6'6" goalie. They're easy to find. Garrison was given a contract offer for the EXACT SAME money as he's getting in Vancouver, if I recall correctly, even 1/2 mil more, and went to Vancouver. So...yeah. When you have 9 players that the team deemed not NHL-ready before the season currently contributing key minutes because of injuries, you're in for a bad time. Being rated by TSN, NHLnetwork, and NHL insiders as having the 2nd deepest team prospect-wise, I'm waiting to see what next year brings, as long as Tallon resigns Mueller.

it's always next year from this team

Garrison gets 27.8 million in a front end loaded 6 yr contract.He is making 5.5 million this year and 6.5 million the season after.The salary rate drops after in the 3rd year.I do NOT believe we matched this 6 year offer.

Not knowing much about prospects, does anyone know if there is a crosby or ovechkin in next years draft?
So the losing this year can be tolerated.
Suck for ?

Hoping that a draft pick is going to change things now is futile. We have had top picks for a decade and it is a crap shoot and needs to be done right. It is merely a bonus.
If draft picks would solve the problem Edmonton would be unbeatable which have had the first pick each of the last three years and top picks for a while.

There is some really exiting players in this years draft like Seth Jones (compared to Chris Pronger), Jonathan Drouin (magician with the puck), Nathan Mackinnon (point machine) and my favorite Valeri Nichushkin (big 6-4, 200lbs, powerful and skilled forward) but they would probably not be helping us for another year or two.

We are building a nucleus of solid players that has been developed the right way through our minor system (not rushed like in the past) and trough free agency. We have some players in the system that is tearing up the place that will join the club next year.

To make draft picks successful you need to have a good surrounding where they can learn and become better than expected (overachievers). I believe we are getting there.

It's amazing how some of you can be duped! Trust in the scouts, maybe next year, the bosses know, injuries, etc. etc. What about decisions that tore apart last years team that was one goal from the 2nd round in the playoffs? Would a REAL hockey ownership group committed to perennially winning let the team that got them to the playoffs after so many years fall apart like this group did?? A resounding NO! There are other agenda's with this group, and hockey is not NUMBER 1, it's down the list. Do you think Philly, Penguins, Red Wings, Rangers, Carolina, Tampa, to mention a few would let these players get away? Grow up and smell the noxious fumes coming from the "noise box" office. We're stuck with this ownership clown act until they get sick of waiting for the casino or somebody way over pays for the hockey portion. Mediocrity and Noise.....get used to it. Read and study litespeeds posts and learn something. I know it's sad but that's the way it is. Don't get used to it.....PROTEST!

@ireland's acorns - there are some really good players, consensus today seems to be Seth Jones (he the son of former NBA player Popeye Jones) is the best of the lot. He is a defender though. There isn't a magical offensive force it seems

King Blabber what decisions are you talking about?

If you are still referring to Garrison, please let it go. He WANTED TO GO TO VANCOUVER and there is no guarantees he would repeat the season if we would somehow convinced him to stay. He hasn't exactly been stellar there.
Other than that we still have the same core team except for Samuelsson which I agree was a loss. However, he has only played 3 games this year for the Red wings due to a bad groin so I don't know how much he would have helped.

Stop blaming everything on management. It is time to let it go.
I do agree with your assessment until two - three years ago but now we have Tallon and he would not sign with an organization that handcuffs him financially or otherwise.
If you know anything about building an organization/team it is that spending money is no guarantee for success, it has to be built intelligently and over time. We now have that organizational and hockey intelligence in Tallon and I for one believe he can do it.
If you ask Chicago fans, they will take him back in a hart-beat even though Stan Bowman is the manager they know who built their team.

How many organizations would let a guy go who was stellar and was a integral part of the power play without at least MATCHING the Canucks offer??? We finally get a team to the playoffs and the Panthers don't want to spend. They don't care about the fans. You don't get it! I've been here since day 1 in Miami and I been through it all. Before that I was in New York and Buffalo/Toronto, organizations that spend and are committed to putting a quality product from year to year. Of course they weren't always successful but as a fan you knew they were always trying. Our excuse is "we're a small market", we can't spend like that! Bull. Why does Carolina and Tampa and Buffalo and others put quality on the ice? Commitment! If you spent the money for a good team the fans would come and you wouldn't have to pummel the people with "make some NOISE" for a lower than mediocre product, you wouldn't have to try to squeeze every dime out of the beleaguered bombarded fan with ads, promotions and loud music and announcements. Is that to make them numb? Every thing is a pain in the ass,i.e. printing out tickets parking passes. This group is not fan friendly....go to Tampa and experience what a real hockey game with loyal fans is like, just try it. Unless you're a shill for Yormacky. Please I've been around and I know when I'm being huckstered. But, there's nothing to do but pray for real hockey ownership to come in here.

The Panthers and their fans are seriously underestimating what an experienced first class goalie means to a team, Especially a young team. Florida should do what it takes to get Luongo from Vancouver. His wife is from Florida and wants to come back. The rap on him as soft in the clutch is ridiculous. He won a gold medal and has regularly bailed out the Canucks in crucial games. Moreover his contract is not that onerous for someone who keeps in as good shape as he does and who is as good in he room. He would be ideal role model for the young Swedish goalie who should be back in AHL He could play 65 games a year making the backup position not that crucial.

Firstly blabber, no one is forcing you to be a fan. If winning today is the only thing that matters to you, get on the Heat wagon.
Secondly, do not patronize the rest of us fans who also have been through this mess because that is just ignorant and stupid and ohh by the way I was Living for a while in Tampa in the late 90's and it was no picknick. They where terrible and you could here crickets in their arena. It took a while for them to turn the ship around too.
The difference between you and I is that I see the changes for what they are and I can see the end of a very long tunnel. I also choose to see the positive in that. In the end it is just a game.
Just try to enjoy the fact that you have a NHL team in your backyard. Not everyone has that luxury.

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