According to the Miami Herald's George Richards, third-year center Aleksander Barkov has a broken bone in his right hand, but will not require surgery.
Recovery time for the 20-year-old pivot is expected to be two to four weeks. Had surgery been required, Barkov would have been out of action for at least two months.
The injury, suffered last Thursday against Chicago, definitely is a tough blow for both the Panthers and Barkov, who had gotten off to a hot start with six points (3G/3A) in the club's first seven games.
Nick Bjugstad filled in on the team's top line between Jaromir Jagr and Jonathan Huberdeau in Saturday night's impressive 6-2 win over the Stars in Dallas.
Remaining to be seen is whether the Cats will recall center Rocco Grimaldi, who has 3 assists in 4 AHL games, from the Portland Pirates or continue to roll with a 22-man roster until Barkov returns to full health.
I'd expect to see Grimaldi up with the big club in the near future.
Update: According to the club, the timetable for Barkov's return is three to four weeks.