Sunrise, FL (SportsNetwork.com) - The Florida Panthers expect to have captain Ed Jovanovski in the lineup for the first time this season during Saturday's game against the Nashville Predators, with the team activating the veteran defenseman from injured reserve on Friday.
Jovanovski has not played since undergoing hip surgery in April and was limited to just six games during the lockout-shortened 2013 campaign due to various injuries.
The 37-year-old, taken by Florida with the No. 1 overall pick in the 1994 NHL Draft, is in the third year of a four-year contract he signed with the Panthers in July of 2011. Jovanovski spent 12 years between the Vancouver Canucks and Phoenix Coyotes before returning to his original organization.
To make room for Jovanovski on the active roster, the Panthers placed defenseman Dylan Olsen on injured reserve with a lower-body issue.
Olsen has recorded three goals and six assists in 17 games since being acquired by Florida in a trade with the Chicago Blackhawks on Nov. 14.