Feb 28, 2013, 4:36 PM EDT
Panthers forward Stephen Weiss will be back in the lineup tonight against the Sabres after missing Tuesday’s 6-4 victory over Pittsburgh following the death of his grandmother.
In truth, it’s been longer than one game since Weiss last played a regular shift — it’s been one game and one period, as the 29-year-old was benched by head coach Kevin Dineen for all but two short shifts in the third period of Sunday’s 4-1 loss to the Bruins.
“It’s never fun to be sat and the easy answer is to play better. That’s the bottom line,” Weiss said today, per the Miami Herald. “That stuff doesn’t bother me. It’s not the first time I’ve been benched and it’s probably not the last time I’ll be benched. It’s just a matter of how you deal with it. You put it behind you and just keep pushing forward, try to play better.”
Weiss — Florida’s fourth overall draft pick in 2001 — has just one goal and three assists in 14 games. His struggles are doubly noteworthy as he’s in the final year of a six-year, $18.6 million contract, with unrestricted free agency a possibility come July 1.
But whether the budget-conscious club is willing to shell out the money to re-sign Weiss, especially given his current form, remains to be seen.
- After prepping for three years, Franson excited to test free agency 1
- Sabres’ Kane (shoulder) ‘ahead of schedule’ with recovery 10
- Lightning ‘answer the challenge’ in Game 7 to reach Stanley Cup Final 34
- Vigneault: McDonagh was playing with a broken foot 16
- Bolts strike Stanley Cup Final berth thanks to Game 7 win over Rangers 76
- The Ducks got Kesler for a game like Saturday’s 32
- Duchene slams Russian players for storming off after Canada’s 2015 WHC win 58
- DeBoer predicts ‘big bounce-back’ in San Jose 14
- Sabres name Bylsma head coach 46
- Lundqvist on Game 7: ‘You’re definitely nervous, but it comes down to teamwork’ 18
- Kesler on wearing down Chicago: ‘No human can withstand that many hits’ (77)
- Bolts strike Stanley Cup Final berth thanks to Game 7 win over Rangers (76)
- From healthy scratch to hero: Vermette scores OT winner for Blackhawks (66)
- Duchene slams Russian players for storming off after Canada’s 2015 WHC win (58)
- Report: Bylsma to Sabres being held up by compensation issue (56)