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Empty Netter Assists - Eastern Conference - 12-13-08

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-The Penguins have struggled to find and maintain chemistry with their line combinations.

-Would-be Penguins owner Jim Balsillie claims he was committed to the city of Pittsburgh when he pursued the Penguins. In other news, the Flyers are committed to gentlemanly play.

-The Penguins are home wreckers.

-Alex Goligoski and Kris Letang (right) have made the most out of their chances this season.

-Evgeni Malkin = Clutch.

-Adam Berkhoel made 21 saves for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins who held off Syracuse, 4-3.

-With a few players out of the lineup, the AHL Penguins pulled out an impressive win.

-Tobias Holm had three goals and two assists while Rob Sirianni added two goals and two assists for the Wheeling Nailers in a 6-2 rout of the Cincinnati Cyclones. David Brown made 27 saves in the win.

Atlantic Division

-Hopefully you had some Rangers or Devils on your fantasy team last night. Brian Gionta had a goal and three assist while teammates Dainius Zubrus and Patrick Elias each recorded a goal and two assists for the Devils in a wild 8-5 defeat of the Rangers. Travis Zajac added two goals while Zach Parise recorded for assists for New Jersey. The Rangers were led by Nikolai Zherdev (one goal, three assists) and Scott Gomez (one goal, two assists).

-Check out this goal Gionta scored last night:

-"Little Rochester Rocket?"

-New Jersey's Scott Clemmensen made 31 saves and became the first goaltender other than Martin Brodeur to defeat the Rangers since Chris Terreri did it, April 7, 1993.

-Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist had no excuse for giving up eight goals.

-Zajac is dealing with a facial injury.

-The Devils put forward Petr Vrana on waivers.

-Elias (right) has his own Web site.

-New Jersey wants forward Mike Rupp to play with more aggression.

-Will the return of goaltender Rick DiPietro really benefit the Islanders?

Northeast Division

-Phil Kessel had a goal and two assists for the Bruins in a 7-3 rout of the Thrashers. Mark Stuart scored two goals while Milan Lucic and Michael Ryder added a goal and an assist. Ilya Kovalchuk had a goal and two assist for Atlanta.

-Vesa Toskala made 24 saves for the Maple Leafs who edged the rival Sabres, 2-1.

-Before last night's game, the Sabres were two goals short of 10,000 in the franchise's history.

-With goaltender Carey Price (illness) and forward Saku Koivu (suspected foot) dealing with ailments, the Canadiens recalled goaltender Marc Denis and forward Ben Maxwell from Hamilton of the AHL.

-Montreal foward Christopher Higgins is dealing with a shoulder injury.

Southeast Division

-Mike Green returned to the Capitals' lineup after missing 11 games due to a shoulder injury, and recorded a goal and two assists in a 5-1 rout of the Senators. Alex Ovechkin scored two goals while teammates Nicklas Backstrom and Sergei Fedorov, playing his first game after missing 16 of 17 games due to an ankle injury, each recorded three assists. Brent Johnson made 32 saves in the win.

-Crazy story out of this game. Backup goaltender Jose Theodore was ruled out of the game due to an injury during the morning skate. Washington then recalled goaltender Simeon Varlamov from Hershey of the AHL. Varlamov couldn't physcially get to the game on time so the Capitals pulled aside a developer for their Web site named Brett Leonhardt (right) to serve as an emergency backup goaltender. Leonhardt, who played as a goaltender in college, signed an amateur tryout contract and served as the Capitals' top backup for roughly 10 minutes until Varlamov arrived. He then left the game and probably his NHL career too.

-There's actually a profile page for Leonhardt on the NHL's site already.

-Stephen Weiss' shootout goal gave the Panthers a 3-2 win at Calgary. Tomas Vokoun made 35 saves in the win. Rene Bourque scored two goals for the Flames.

-The Hurricanes activated goaltender Cam Ward from injured reserve and demoted goaltender Justin Peters to Albany of the AHL.

-The Staals are brothers.

-The Lightning made a few moves. Forward Steve Downie was demoted to Norfolk of the AHL, forward Matt Pettinger was activated from injured reserve and defenseman Mike Lundin was put on waivers.

-Tampa Bay forward Martin St. Louis has been hot lately.

-The Lightnhing has been relying on defenseman Andrej Meszaros for some serious minutes.

-The Capitals demoted forwards Sean Collins and Oskar Osala to Hershey of the AHL.

-Washington also recalled goaltender Michal Neuvirth from South Carolina of the ECHL.

-Thrashers forward and former Penguin Colby Armstrong wore a microphone on the ice last night.

-Panthers forward Nathan Horton is dealing with an ankle injury.

-Florida defenseman Bryan McCabe wants to run naked in the streets in Miami.

(Photos: Letang and Elias-Jim McIsaac/Getty Images; Leonhardt-Luis M. Alvarez/Associated Press)

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