Jose Theodore watched Jacob Markstrom from one of the best seats in the building. Sitting on the Panthers bench right near the ice, the Panthers' elder statesman in goal took in what Florida's youngster was doing.

And no one was rooting harder for the kid to have success.

"What a character guy. He's been awesome in the room to everyone, but what a positive influence on Jacob,'' Stephen Weiss said of the relationship between the Theodore, 35, and Markstrom, 21.

"No one is happier for Markstrom than Theo was. Theo is a class act, has been great since he's been here. He's great for Markstrom, although he has a confidence about him where he's comfortable in his own shoes and does his own thing. But it doesn't hurt to have Theo right there beside him.''