Dustin Byfuglien was attending to a personal matter in Minnesota Monday and was not with the Winnipeg Jets for their practice at BB&T Center.

But coach Claude Noel says the big defenceman is expected to travel to Florida tomorrow and be in the lineup when the Jets take on the Florida Panthers Tuesday night.

The concern now is the possibility that travel in the Midwest will be delayed by a snowstorm, which could make it difficult for Byfuglien to get to Florida in time for the game. Noel said Derek Meech will play in his place if Byfuglien can’t get here.

“You’d have to be a little bit concerned because they are expecting bad weather all the way from Winnipeg down to Minny and Chicago,” Noel said.

The Jets are coming off a 3-0 home loss to the Washington Capitals, but have been red hot on the road of late, winning five of their last six games.

They will play three games in four nights against division rivals on this trip, including games Tuesday and Friday here against the Panthers and Thursday in Tampa Bay.

“Three games in your division … I think we need to set our sights on Carolina and see if we can chip away at the difference in the points within our division,” Noel said. “Every point is so important right now at this juncture.”

The Jets, currently 10th in the Eastern Conference with 21 points, are only four points back of the Carolina Hurricanes, who hold down first place in the Southeast and the third seed in the East.