SUNRISE, Fla. — Add defenseman Scott Hannan to the list of injured Sharks.
Hannan will not be in the lineup Thursday night against the Florida Panthers, coach Todd McLellan said, because of an upper body injury that goes back to the final minute of San Jose's win over Detroit one week ago when he was elbowed in the jaw by Red Wing forward Dan Cleary
The veteran defenseman did play in the next game against Boston, but sat out Tuesday night's shootout victory in Washington and will not be in the lineup Thursday night against the Florida Panthers. The injury is believed to be a concussion.
Back-up goalie Alex Stalock is getting his first start in net since Jan. 5, when the Sharks beat the Chicago Blackhawks 3-2 in a shootout. McLellan has said he planned to use Stalock more frequently going forward, in part because starter Antti Niemi is on Team Finland in the Sochi Olympics and could benefit from a reduced workload.
The start is the seventh for Stalock and 11th appearance overall. He is 5-2 with a .932 save percentage and 2.03 goals against average. The Panthers are expected to start Tim Thomas, the former Boston Bruins netminder who is 12-11-3 with a .917 save percentage and 2.55 goals against average.
The Sharks also will have James Sheppard back on the fourth line after he has missed the past three games dealing with the death of his grandfather.
San Jose is facing a Panther team that is 11-5-2 in its last 18 games and rebounding under interim coach Peter Horachek, who took over Nov. 8 after Kevin Dineen was fired. Still, Florida is tied for 14th among the sixteen Eastern Conference teams with 43 points.
McLellan doesn't want his players focusing on that last statistic.
"We can't underestimate the work ethic of this team down in Florida," he said. "They've got a lot of talent in their lineup, the coaching change. They seem to be energized or maybe some of the players that hadn't had good starts, they're playing well now. For us to approach this any other way than our A game would be a disaster."