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Empty Netter Assists - 06-26-10

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

Welcome to Pittsburgh, Dam Hamhuis (for a week at least).

-"I'm disappointed - he would have been a good fit for us." - Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren trading Hamhuis (above).

-Why did Holmgren pull a trade with the rival Penguins?

-Welcome to Pittsburgh, Beau Bennett (for a little while longer).

-At No. 20 overall, Bennett became the highest drafted California native in NHL history.

-Bennett posing with Penguins executives (left to right) Jay Heinbuck, Chuck Grillo, Wayne Meier, Dan MacKinnon, head coach Dan Bylsma and general manager Ray Shero:

-Bennett being kind of touchy-feely with his jersey:

-For some reason, the NHL had all the draft picks pose in this "Darth-Vader-in-the-spotlight" pose. Here's Bennett's shots:

-Sidney Crosby chatting it up and avoiding eye contact with Predators defenseman/world destroyer Shea Weber:

-Your first-round recap.

-The NHL's payroll range was officially announced. The cap ceiling will be $59.4 million while the floor will be $43.4 million.

Atlantic Divison

-Islanders draft pick Brock Nelson is the nephew of 1980 United States Olympian and former Jets/Capitals/Bruins/Blues/Blackhawks forward Dave Christian.

-The Islanders had actor and fan Kevin Connolly sitting at their table for some reason. Betweeen him, owner Charles Wang and this kid, we're guessing the kid has a better grasp on hockey scouting:

-Connolly and Wang really like Lays Chips apparently:

-Whe joked quite a bit about Connolly being shorter than the kid last night. In reality, the kid is almost as tall as him:

-Islanders draft pick Nino Niederreiter was a little smug in his Darth Vader shot:

-We do have to give the Islanders props for bringing back the old school road white jerseys by the way.

-The Islanders' other first-rounder, Brock Nelson, looked like he was drugged or something for his photos:

-Is it us, or does Rangers draft pick Dylan McIlrath look a little like Leonardo DiCaprio in his Vader pose:

Northeast Division

-Bruins forward Mark Recchi cited his experiences with former veteran Penguins teammates Joe Mullen and Bryan Trottier as inspiration for his desire to act as a mentor to first-round pick Tyler Seguin.

-Seguin offering a my-mom-is-making-me-try-on-these-slacks-at-the-mall pose:

-"Tim has never asked to be traded. Tim wants to be a Boston Bruin." - Bruins general manager on goaltender Tim Thomas.

-The Senators acquired defenseman David Rundblad from the Blues in exchange for the No. 16 pick in the draft. Rundblad was the No. 17 pick in the 2009 draft.

-The annual "Maple Leafs defenseman Tomas Kaberle is on the trading block" sweepstakes is underway.

-Canadiens draft pick Jarred Tinordi is either really tall or the Habs simply don't place a lot of emphasis on height with their front office personnel:

Southeast Division

-The Panthers acquired forwards Steve Bernier and Michael Grabner from the Canucks in exchange for defenseman Keith Ballard and forward Victor Oreskovich and the No. 25 pick in the draft.

-Florida took Minnesota high school defenseman Nick Bjugstad with the No. 19 pick. He is the nephew of former Penguins forward Scott Bjugstad.

-"We look for three things in our players -- character, intellect or hockey sense and speed. He’s got all three." - Thrashers general manager Rick Dudley on first-round pick Alexander Burmistrov.

-"I honestly think if this kid was healthy, he'd be challenging for No. 1 and 2 in this year's draft." - Lightning personnel director Jim Hammett on first-round pick Brett Connolly who dealt with hip injuries last season. Tampa Bay took Connolly No. 6 overall.

-"We can do some things that other teams are afraid to do." - Capitals general manager George McPhee suggesting his team has a better opportunity of drafting an signing Russian prospects than other franchises. The Capitals selected forward Evgeny Kuznetsov with the No. 26 pick last night.

-Kuznetsov still tried to scare the Capitals with this pose anyway:

-McPhee shot down a report that Capitals forward and former Penguin Chris Bourque signed with a team in the KHL.

-Hurricanes coach/executive and former Penguins captain Ron Francis just being awesome:

-Hurricanes general manager and former Penguins goaltender Jim Rutherford looking like he's ordering a pizza:

Central Division

-With the salary cap going up more than expected, Blackhawks general manager Stan Bowman declared his team didn't need to make any more trades in order to re-sign any free agents.

-The Blackhawks did make a qualifying offer to restricted free agent goaltender Antti Niemi.

-Blackhawks draft pick Kevin Hayes went all country bumpkin for his photo shoot:

-"I broke off all ties with Detroit when I got drafted by Nashville." - Predators first-round selection Austin Watson, a native of Ann Arbor, Mich. who grew up a Red Wings fan.

-Red Wings assistant general manager Jim Nill compared first-round draft pick Riley Sheahan to Detroit forward Johan Franzen.

-Blues draft pick Jaden Schwartz has a "you can't expect me to wear this" look going on:

Northwest Division

-"I was shaking so much as I sat in the seats... when they called out ‘from the Windsor Spitfires’ my mind went blank. When I got to the stage to put on the Oilers’ jersey, I could barely put it on.” - Oilers forward and former Windsor Spitfire Taylor Hall on being chosen with the first overall pick of the draft.

-Useless fact: Hall's father, Steve, was a a stunt double in the movie "Cool Runnings."

-Approximately 6,000 fans showed up for a draft party at Rexall Place in Edmonton.

-Hall being selected:

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-Plenty of Oilers fans made their way down to Los Angeles:

-Florida's Erik Gudbranson, Hall and Seguin, the top three picks in the draft, doing the obligatory "1-2-3" pose:

-"Being called an off-the-board pick, I love it. I can't wait to prove everyone wrong and show that's where I belong to be drafted." - Avalanche prospect Joey Hishon, the No. 17 pick in the draft.

-Hishon apparently had a cold sore he was embarrassed by:

-Hishon then broke out into a happy-zombie-marching pose:

-Wild draft pick Mikael Granlund had some wicked bed head:

Pacific Division

-"I was like, 'Oh my gosh, it's Scott Niedermayer.' The rest kind of blacked out from there." - Ducks prospect Cam Fowler, the No. 12 pick in the draft, on meeting recently retired Ducks captain Scott Niedermayer on the stage.

-The Ducks took Long Beach native Emerson Etem with the No. 29 pick overall.

-We can't believe a photographer actually asked Etem and others to take photos like this:

-Ducks general manager Bob Murray and Don Meehan, the agent for restricted free agent forward Bobby Ryan, shot down a rumor Ryan agreed to a contract extension.

-Sharks first-round pick Charlie Coyle is a cousin with former Rangers/Blackhawks/Coyotes/Flyers/Flames forward Tony Amonte and former Canadiens/Golden Seals/Black Hawks/Rockies/Kings forward Bobby Sheehan.

-Kings draft pick Derek Forbort modeled the Kings old school "Lakers" uniforms:

-Coyotes draft pick Brandon Gormley took his Vader shot a little too seriously:

Norris Division

-A record 11 Americans were selected in the first round.

-Today would've been the 110th birthday of Wilfred "Tex" White, a forward with the NHL's Pittsburgh Pirates and the Pittsburgh Hornets.

(Photos: Hamhuis-Doug Pensinger/Getty Images; NHL Draft-Bruce Bennett/Getty Images, Jeff Gross/Getty Images and Harry How/Getty Images)

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