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Panthers send Markstrom to AHL; Nash skates again

by Tal Pinchevsky

Jacob Markstrom entered training camp poised to develop from the Florida Panthers' goaltender of the future into their goaltender of the present. But the signing of Tim Thomas shortly before the season, coupled with Markstrom's slowed development, led the Panthers to assign the 23-year-old to their American Hockey League affiliate in San Antonio.

Markstrom, who hasn't won a game since Oct. 11, is 1-5-3 with a 3.36 goals-against average and .877 save percentage. Despite getting the start in a 3-2 loss on Saturday against the Ottawa Senators, Tim Thomas will be back between the pipes against the New York Rangers on Sunday at Madison Square Garden.

Henrik Lundqvist will start for the Rangers, who will insert Brandon Mashinter for Taylor Pyatt (concussion). Mashinter has been a healthy scratch the past two games for New York.

"I've seen improvement and I've seen a young man that works real hard," Rangers coach Alain Vigneault said of Mashinter. "He brings a physical dimension to our team that we need and he will get another opportunity tonight."

For the second straight day, Rick Nash skated with the Rangers' extras, including injured forward Dominic Moore and backup goaltender Cam Talbot. There remains no timetable for his return, but his being back on the ice is an encouraging sign for the Rangers.

Here are the projected lineups for the Panthers and Rangers:


Scottie Upshall - Aleksander Barkov - Kris Versteeg

Jonathan Huberdeau - Nick Bjugstad - Tomas Fleischmann

Sean Bergenheim - Shawn Matthias - Krys Barch

Brad Boyes - Marcel Goc - Tomas Kopecky

Dmitry Kulikov - Erik Gudbranson

Brian Campbell - Tom Gilbert

Mike Weaver - Matt Gilroy

Tim Thomas

Scott Clemmensen

Scratched: Scott Gomez, Jesse Winchester (suspended)

Injured: Ed Jovanovski (hip surgery)


Mats Zuccarello - Derek Stepan - Chris Kreider

Ryan Callahan - Brad Richards - Carl Hagelin

Derek Dorsett - Derick Brassard - Benoit Pouliot

Brandon Mashinter - Brian Boyle - J.T. Miller

Dan Girardi - Ryan McDonagh

Michael Del Zotto - Marc Staal

Anton Stralman - John Moore

Henrik Lundqvist

Cam Talbot

Scratched: Justin Falk

Injured: Rick Nash (head), Dominic Moore (strained oblique), Taylor Pyatt (concussion)

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