Nearly two days off skates and 12 hours after spending the evening doing Team Building exercises in the woods of upstate New York, the Panthers got back on the ice Monday at Tate Arena at the United States Military Academy at West Point.
With GM and coach Jacques Martin looking on, the Panthers did on-ice and off-ice workouts before spending the afternoon attending more Team Building activities.
Martin said the team is enjoying their time at West Point.
“It’s an opportunity to spend some time together and do different activities,” Martin said. “It’s having three days, four days, to prepare (for the season opener Thursday at the Rangers) starting with (Sunday) and the three practices (at West Point). The last phase of our training camp is to try and focus on getting the guys to know each other better and have a greater appreciation for what each player brings to the table, and then try to fine tune some of the things we want to do as far as system.”
Martin said he’s considering several line options, including Olli Jokinen with Ville Peltonen and Richard Zednik (who went hard Monday into the boards), Stephen Weiss
with Nathan Horton and Rostislav Olesz and Jozef Stumpel with Radek Dvorak and David Booth.
Martin added that defenseman Steve Montador, who didn’t make the trip to West Point, had arthroscopic surgery on his knee Monday and is expected to miss “in the area of two to four weeks.”
“Nothing serious,” said Martin of the surgery, “but it caused the knee to swell after activities.”
Although Montador’s absence leaves the team with 21 players, Martin said he didn’t plan on adding to his roster before Thursday’s game at Madison Square Garden.
“We’ll stay at 21,” he said. “We’ll see what happens. When we get Monty back that puts us at 22. If there’s need to make a call up, we’ll make a call up. Right now we’ll start with 21.”