Goaltenders: Tim Thomas and Jacob Markstrom
By the numbers: Thomas: 2-3-0, 3.11 GAA, .905 save percentage
Markstrom: 1-4-2, 3.19 GAA, .887 save percentage
How it's playing out: It's too early to tell how this is going to work out, but it's safe to say that Thomas' return to the NHL has not gone smoothly. While he has had a couple of notable games—including an impressive showing against the Boston Bruins—Thomas has been removed from three games.
Thomas has twice had to come out of a game because of injuries (lower body), and he is currently on the injured list. The 39-year-old goalie may be impacted by these problems for quite a while.
If Thomas can shake his injury problems and stay healthy, he still has to prove that he can battle consistently. While he has flashed some of his old skills, it doesn't appear that he will be ready to dominate any time soon.
Still, a healthy Thomas is probably a better alternative than Markstrom, 23. While Markstrom has a 6'3" frame and sufficient quickness, he often looks intimidated.
Markstrom has a long way to go to prove he can be a winning NHL goalie. The Panthers are hoping that Thomas can get healthy and stay in the lineup.
Edge goes to: Thomas, by a small margin.