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Thomas takes to ice with Panthers

Tim Thomas with Markstrom watching
Tim Thomas with Markstrom watching

Pictured above is Tim Thomas in goal during this morning’s Florida Panthers practice (per the Miami Herald’s George Richards).

Watching Thomas -- who’s with the Panthers on a tryout basis -- is young Jacob Markstrom, who’s got big plans of his own for the 2013-14 season.

The other goalie battling for a spot with the club is veteran Scott Clemmensen, currently sidelined a few weeks with a knee injury.

Yesterday, general manager Dale Tallon spoke to reporters about his decision to give Thomas, 39, a shot.

“He’s a two-time Vezina Trophy winner, a Conn Smythe Trophy winner,” Tallon told reporters. “We need goaltending. We need somebody to help us get to where we need to get to. Right now it’s Tim Thomas. He’s going to get an opportunity.”

Tallon added: “He and Markstrom and Clemmensen will battle for the position. And whoever wins the position will be the starter. ... He [Thomas] really wants to play and he really wants to lead and he really wants to be the starter and he wants to win and he wants to win now. I was very impressed with him. I liked everything he had to say, I liked his approach. ... We strive to get better every day and a good Tim Thomas will make us better.”

The Panthers have five preseason games remaining, starting Wednesday in Dallas. According to Harvey Fialkov of the Sun Sentinel, Thomas may get the nod Saturday in Tampa Bay.

Related: Thomas is a smart gamble for Panthers