Florida Panthers Derek MacKenzie Out Indefinitely

OTTAWA, ON - MARCH 29: Florida Panthers Center Derek MacKenzie (17) skates during warm-up before National Hockey League action between the Florida Panthers and Ottawa Senators on March 29, 2018, at Canadian Tire Centre in Ottawa, ON, Canada. (Photo by Richard A. Whittaker/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)

The Florida Panthers announced Tuesday, that veteran forward Derek MacKenzie will be out indefinitely after undergoing successful shoulder surgery.

Derek MacKenzie Injury Continues.

This surgery was scheduled as a result of a shoulder injury obtained in early October against the Tampa Bay Lightning.

Because of this injury, the Canadian native only played one game in this 2018-19 season. And in this one game, his possession numbers were 40 % Corsi and a relative Corsi of -11.2.

It is likely however, the two-way forward will miss most, if not all of the remaining games scheduled.

Last season, MacKenzie appeared in 75 games, scoring three goals, 11 assists totalling 14 points. And over his extensive twelve-year NHL career, the previous Captain has played for the Colombus Blue Jackets and the Florida Panthers. He has 51 goals and 74 assists for 125 career points in 611 career games. He was originally drafted by the Atlanta Thrashers, now known as the Winnipeg Jets in the 5th round, 128th overall in the 1999 NHL draft.

What This Means for the Future.

Although statistically unimpressive. MacKenzie ranked second among all Panthers forwards in short-handed ice time with 172:35. With up and coming players emerging this experience will be missed as the Panthers have had a slow start yet again. Winning only three games so far this season.

The 37-year-old served as the Panthers captain for the last two seasons before this injury. But has now passed the honor on to Aleksander Barkov. If MacKenzie misses the entire season, which is possible. The forwards return to the lineup will prove more difficult. Making retirement a realistic alternative. Hopefully not, as it will be an underwhelming end to an established hockey career.

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