AP Sports Writer

CORAL SPRINGS, Fla. (AP) – Tim Thomas got involved with the construction of some townhouses during his sabbatical from hockey, dabbled with some other business ventures, and even went alligator hunting in Florida.

He’s now back in Florida, looking for something other than gators.

Thomas’ tryout started with the Florida Panthers on Tuesday, when he was on the ice for his first workout with the club. Thomas took last season off to focus on other areas of his life, and says he’s “almost reborn in a way.”

He’ll join the Panthers for their 3-game, 4-day road trip to Dallas, San Antonio and Tampa, Fla., a trek that starts Wednesday. But Panthers coach Kevin Dineen says he’s willing to give Thomas a few days to get acclimated before putting him into game action.

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