The Florida Panthers have assigned Jayce Hawryluk to the minor leagues on a conditioning stint, likely signaling that he is finally ready to play again. The 23-year old hasn’t played since suffering an upper-body injury at the end of October, but had three points in his first eight games with the Panthers this season.
Not that the Panthers need much help as they sit third in the Atlantic Division with a 15-10-5 record, but Hawryluk is a proven option for their bottom-six that suited up 42 times last year. Originally drafted 32nd overall in 2014, he has found his way to being a top offensive option eventually at every level and still has time to develop into one for the Panthers.
Even if he never becomes that top-six player however, he’ll be welcomed back to the Panthers this season to play in a lesser role. In order to go to the minors under regular circumstances he would need to clear waivers, meaning he’ll be back up once the team feels he’s ready for NHL action.