LANDOVER -- The Washington Capitals announced yesterday that they were sending former head coach Terry Murray on loan to the Florida Panthers for the remainder of the season so he may coach the Cincinnati Cyclones of the International Hockey League.

The Cyclones are the Panthers' top minor-league club.

Murray will remain under contract to Washington this season and through the 1994-95 season.

Washington vice president of communications Ed Quinlan said last night that the Capitals will continue to pay Murray this season but that they will be reimbursed by the Panthers.

Asked whether Murray would wind up making the same salary as he would have with the Capitals the rest of the season, Quinlan said: "That hasn't been worked out yet. It will depend on how far they [Cyclones] go [in the playoffs]."

Murray's debut will be tomorrow against the Indianapolis Ice.

The move comes 22 days after he was fired as Capitals coach and replaced by Jim Schoenfeld.

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