With Sasha Barkov, Jonathan Huberdeau and Aaron Ekblad all out of the lineup, it was Joe Thornton’s turn to lead the Florida Panthers on the ice.
After a season in which Thornton sacrificed a main role by sitting out in 49 of 82 games, the Panthers rewarded him with an ‘A’ on his sweater during their final two games of the 2021-22 regular season.
”It was great,’’ Thornton told Jessica Blaylock of Bally Sports during the first intermission of Thursday’s game in Ottawa.
“There were a lot of guys out so I got the privilege. To be part of this group has been special. We have a lot of work left to do.”
Thornton has been used to wearing a letter on his jersey for much of his 24-year career, donning one in 18 different seasons and spending seven of them as a captain.
This one was a cool moment for both him and the team.