Panthers lose Versteeg for at least three games Staff

2/28/2012 1:54:17 PM

The Southeast Division leading Florida Panthers, will look to maintain their advantage this week without the services of their leading scorer Kris Versteeg.

According to the Miami Herald, head coach Kevin Dineen confirmed that Versteeg will miss at least the next three games with a lower-body injury.

Versteeg, who was 'hurting' after the Panthers' game on Saturday, tried to play on Sunday against the Montreal Canadiens, but he could only last the first period.

In 59 games this season, the 25-year-old has 22 goals and 27 assists.

The injury comes at a bad time for the Panthers, who currently hold a two-point lead over the Winnipeg Jets, and a three point lead over the Washington Capitals in the race for the Southeast crown.

The Panthers face the 10th place Toronto Maple Leafs on Tuesday before traveling to Winnipeg to face the Jets on Thursday.  The Panthers then return home to host the Nashville Predators on Saturday followed by the seventh place in the East Ottawa Senators on Sunday.