Reporting Tim Kephart
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SUNRISE, Fla. (CBSMiami) – Florida Panthers fans hungry to know who will be starting in between the pipes for the team in Game 7 Thursday night can exhale a little because it appears that veteran Jose Theodore should be in goal against the New Jersey Devils.
According to George Richards of CBS4 news partner the Miami Herald, Theodore was running in the starters net during the Panthers’ morning skate Thursday while Game 6 starter Scott Clemmensen was in the backup net.
Richards said Theodore was getting a “healthy workout” during the morning skate and later said that Theodore wasn’t among the Panthers’ scratches from Game 7, meaning he will be available.
“Theo has been our go-to guy,” Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen said after watching a few minutes of Theodore’s workout on Wednesday. “And if he’s available, he’ll be the one running with it.”
Theodore’s last game was Game 5 when he pitched a shutout against the Devils. Clemmensen started Game 6 and played great stopping 39 of 42 shots. It wasn’t a question of Clemmensen’s goalkeeping but the Panthers’ offense from being completely stonewalled by the Devils.
New Jersey outshot Florida 42-16 for the game and if that happens again Thursday night, the only hope the Panthers have is that all 16 of their shots are on an open goal.
The puck drops a little after 8:30 Thursday night for the deciding Game 7 of the Eastern Conference quarterfinals.