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Markstrom Earns Backup Job

Friday, 09.30.2011 / 10:03 AM ET / News
By Glenn Odebralski  - FloridaPanthers.com
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Markstrom Earns Backup Job
Jacob Markstrom makes a stop during a pre-season game against the Dallas Stars on September 27 at the BankAtlantic Center (Eliot J. Schechter).
The Panthers filled out one part of their opening night lineup prior to the final tune-up game in Dallas as they set their goaltending tandem Thursday afternoon.

With Scott Clemmensen out around a month thanks to a minor knee procedure on Monday, the Panthers decided to go with 21-year old Jacob Markstrom as the backup to Jose Theodore.

Markstrom was battling for the back up spot with 24-year old Tyler Plante with Clemmensen recovering from his procedure. Plante was placed on waivers with the purpose of sending him to the San Antonio Rampage, the Panthers AHL affiliate.

"He earned the roster spot," said Panthers head coach Kevin Dineen to the media following the morning skate at Saveology.com Iceplex. "At the end, it was performance based."

"Of course it was good news for me," said Markstrom prior to the game at American Airlines Center. "I have to work hard, continue to do what I do and try to improve my game, try to stick around here as long as possible.

"For now it's great news. It's fun. That's why I'm here to play and it's good experience for me. Hopefully I can stay up here for a while.

The two young netminders each had two pre-season appearances to impress the Panthers brass with Markstrom playing all 60 minutes in Tampa Bay on September 23 (28 saves, 33 shots) and 31 minutes against Dallas on September 27 (10 saves, 10 shots) while Plante started against Nashville on September 19 (7 saves, 8 shots) and came in against Dallas (12 saves, 16 shots).

While Markstrom is seen as the future between the pipes for the Panthers after being drafted in the second round (31st overall) in the 2008 NHL Draft, it was his play, particularly against Dallas, that earned him the nod now.

"It wasn't potential based for me. We're not here to sell the future," said Dineen. "Guys who perform on the ice are going to earn their way onto the lineup.''

"I need to improve my game and I need to show all the people that I earned it," said Markstrom.

While Markstrom has been the starter for the last couple of years for Brynas in the Swedish Elite League and in Rochester (AHL) last season, he'll be thrust into the role of backup, at least at the beginning.

"I don't really have that mindset really," said Markstrom about thinking of himself as a backup who won't get a lot of opportunities. "I want to play every game. I think every goalie has that mindset. You need to have that mindset.

"You can't be happy to sit on the bench but you see what happens. It's a good team, good league and good goalies in this organization."

After coming in and playing one game against the New Jersey Devils on January 23rd last season, Markstrom is looking forward to the opportunity to get his first NHL start, even if he's taking the situation day by day.

"I'm not going to get anything for free but hopefully I get a chance," said Markstrom. "It's up to me."

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STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - WSH 82 56 18 8 252 193 120
2 x - PIT 82 48 26 8 245 203 104
3 y - FLA 82 47 26 9 239 203 103
4 x - NYR 82 46 27 9 236 217 101
5 x - NYI 82 45 27 10 232 216 100
6 x - TBL 82 46 31 5 227 201 97
7 x - PHI 82 41 27 14 214 218 96
8 x - DET 82 41 30 11 211 224 93
9 BOS 82 42 31 9 240 230 93
10 CAR 82 35 31 16 198 226 86
11 OTT 82 38 35 9 236 247 85
12 NJD 82 38 36 8 184 208 84
13 MTL 82 38 38 6 221 236 82
14 BUF 82 35 36 11 201 222 81
15 CBJ 82 34 40 8 219 252 76
16 TOR 82 29 42 11 198 246 69

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Jagr 79 27 39 23 66
J. Jokinen 81 18 42 25 60
A. Barkov 66 28 31 18 59
J. Huberdeau 76 20 39 17 59
V. Trocheck 76 25 28 15 53
R. Smith 82 25 25 19 50
A. Ekblad 78 15 21 18 36
N. Bjugstad 67 15 19 -8 34
B. Campbell 82 6 25 31 31
B. Pirri 52 11 13 -4 24
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
R. Luongo 35 19 6 .922 2.35
A. Montoya 12 7 3 .919 2.18

 
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