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Rehabbing Clemmensen isn’t flustered by Florida courting Thomas

Sep 19, 2013, 7:55 PM EDT

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Florida Panthers (prohibitive) backup goalie Scott Clemmensen has had a shaky couple weeks, but the good news is that his rehab from knee surgery appears to be on track, the Miami Herald reports.

The 36-year-old netminder received extra motivation to get back on the ice quickly thanks to Tim Thomas’ professional tryout, although Clemmensen claims he’s not bothered by the presence of a two-time Vezina winner.

“This is nothing new for me,” Clemmensen said. “I’ve been through just about everything you can think of in my career. You just play the best you can; I don’t make the decisions so I can’t worry about it.”

Clemmensen’s real ace in the hole might just be the flexibility of Jacob Markstrom‘s contract.

Like any self-respecting goalie, Markstrom, 23, wants to be a full-time goalie now. The Panthers wisely structured his contract so it goes from two-way (in 2013-14) then one-way the next (2014-15), so GM Dale Tallon & Co. can decide to give him more seasoning in the AHL without waiver worries.

They can also move Markstrom in and out of the lineup depending on how the franchise’s other goalies perform, making for some great competition that could – ideally – help the Panthers be competitive after an atrocious 2013 campaign.

None of Florida’s trio of netminders probably feels truly comfortable, yet that might just be a good thing. If nothing else, Clemmensen seems like he could be healthy enough to give himself an honest shot.

  1. tctctime - Sep 19, 2013 at 8:40 PM

    I love the Panthers…truly. I go to 3-4 home games per year when I’m visiting and sit with 5000 other fans, 3/4 of whom are cheering for the visiting team. I always leave the stadium feeling badly for the Team and although I’m sure it’s enjoyable to live there, the players are proud athletes who hope that some “real” team will pick them up at some point. Shame on the NHL for relentlessly trying to push a sport in places where it doesn’t belong. Despite having a salary Cap in the NHL, it reeks of disparity when you have teams that struggle to meet payroll and are always just over the minimum. Move them to Quebec or Seattle and let the players bask in the glory of their success..

  2. vanindeed - Sep 19, 2013 at 9:32 PM

    I wouldn’t bet against Thomas.

  3. stakex - Sep 19, 2013 at 10:47 PM

    If Thomas didn’t completely leave his game in his bunker, I have a feeling Clemmensen is going to be riding a lot of pine this year. Thomas might be a bit of a strange dude, but he’s one hell of a goalie… and even if he’s a bit rusty he’ll no doubt be better then Clemmensen.

    • caniac4ever - Sep 19, 2013 at 11:07 PM

      Bunker? I thought they just called them basements in Colorado…

    • broadstreetsbaddest88 - Sep 20, 2013 at 4:12 AM

      Yeah I would have to agree that Thomas would definitely be a better upgrade then clemmensen. He was less then decent Last year. I’d be nervous if I was him considering Who is tryin to steal his job. Especially a stellar goaltender of his caliber tryin to prove something. This is a risk worth takin on florida’s end.

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