Feb 28, 2012, 12:43 PM EDT
The loss is a big one for the Panthers. Versteeg is their go-to guy up front — leading the team in goals (22), points (49) and game-winning goals (five) — and they’re about to embark on a crucial stretch. With 70 points and sitting atop the Southeast Division, Florida’s:
— In Toronto on Tuesday to face the 10th-place Leafs (65 points).
— In Winnipeg on Thursday to face the eighth-place Jets (68 points).
— At home Saturday against Nashville.
— At home Sunday against seventh-place Ottawa (74 points).
The hope is Versteeg will return to the lineup for Sunday, though reports suggest the injury could keep him out next week as well. As for replacements: John Madden will draw in while Tomas Kopecky moves up to center the first line between Tomas Fleischmann and Wojtek Wolski.
- As Bolts deal with illness, extra day of rest could prove beneficial 3
- Sounds like it’s Rundblad, not TVR, in for Chicago on defense 10
- On Kreider, and trying ‘to turn the other cheek’ 31
- Report: Sharks to name DeBoer head coach 12
- Video: Lundqvist helps lead Rangers back to New York for Game 7 5
- Lightning get taken to ‘school of hard knocks’ in third-period collapse 11
- A storm brewing: Rangers rally to force Game 7 with Lightning (Video) 11
- Video: Lundqvist stones Stamkos with left-pad save 0
- Bob Clarke really doesn’t care for tanking 37
- Hitchcock re-signs for one more year in St. Louis 10
- Reports: Sabres thought they had a deal with Babcock, aren’t happy (174)
- Leafs land Babcock with reported 8-year deal, estimated at $50 million (130)
- Kesler on wearing down Chicago: ‘No human can withstand that many hits’ (75)
- What’s wrong with Lundqvist? (70)
- From healthy scratch to hero: Vermette scores OT winner for Blackhawks (66)