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Empty Netter Assists - 12-29-10

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-Shelly Anderson's recap from last night's game. 25.

-The Atlanta Journal-Constitution's recap. "You would expect the defense to know that No. 87 is pretty good.” - Thrashers coach Craig Ramsay on Sidney Crosby's (above) second goal.

-The Associated Press' recap. Thrashers goaltender Ondrej Pavelec is now 0-7-0 in his career against the Penguins.

-NHL.com's recap. "I knew he touched it..." - Crosby on his would-be hat trick being "taken away" by Matt Cooke.

-Mike Lange's goal calls.

-Highlights:

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-Kris Letang's play to set up Crosby for his first goal deserves a second look:

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-Mark Letestu's goal/bullying of Alexander Burmistrov deserves a second look:

-Matt Cooke and Evander Kane are not BFFs:

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-Cool Photo of the Night: Warm ups at Consol Energy Center:

-Crosby and Evgeni Malkin getting ready for a faceoff:

-Happy times for Chris Kunitz, Pascal Dupuis and Crosby:

-Happy times for the Penguins. Not so much for Pavelec:

-Happy times for Dustin Byfuglien. Not so much for the Penguins' bench:

-Dan Bylsma speaks:

-Craig Adams speaks:

-Marc-Andre Fleury speaks:

-Back to back games don't seem to faze the Penguins.

-Are the Penguins taking too many penalties (PG+)?

-"That will be the only time where you'll ever have to wake up and open up the curtains to see what you're going to get for your hockey game." - Capitals forward Mike Knuble on the Winter Classic.

-Marking his first interaction with anything winter-related in 2010 (we think), Pittsburgh mayor Luke Ravenstahl helped paint some of the ice at Heinz Field.

-Penguins vice president of communications and former Post-Gazette reporter Tom McMillan offers a pretty unique perspective on Mario Lemieux's (right) comeback.

-Andrew Orpik recorded two assists for the Wheeling Nailers in a 4-3 shootout loss to the Gwinnett Gladiators.

-Scary story here. Former Penguins forward Nils Ekman suffered what sounds like a stroke. Ekman, 34, is currently a member of Djurgården of the Elitserien in Sweden.

-Happy 49th birthday to former Penguins forward Tom O'Regan. A free agent signing in the 1983 offseason, O'Regan spent parts of three seasons with the Penguins. As a rookie in 1983-84, O'Regan saw action in 51 games and scored 14 points. He followed that up in 1984-85 by playing in one game and failing to record a point. His final NHL season was 1985-86. He played in nine games and scored three points. He was released in the 1986 offseason.

-Happy 58th birthday to former Penguins defenseman Tom Bladon (right). Acquired in the 1978 offseason along with Ross Lonsberry and Orest Kindrachuk in a deal which sent a draft pick to the Flyers, the "Bomber"spent parts of two seasons with the Penguins. In 1978-79, Bladon appeared in 78 games and scored 27 points. During the 1979 postseason, he appeared in seven games and recorded four assists. He followed that up in 1979-80 by playing in 57 games and recording eight points. In that spring's postseason, Bladon played in one game and scored one goal. During the 1980 offseason, Bladon joined the Oilers as a free agent. In 135 regular season games, Bladon scored 35 points. In eight postseason games, he scored five points.

Atlantic Division

-The Devils demoted forward Brian Rolston (right) and his $5.062 salary cap hit to Albany of the AHL with the intentions of bringing him back through re-entry waivers.

-Do the Devils have a realistic chance of reaching the postseason?

-With defenseman Chris Pronger already sidelined due to a broken foot, the Flyers saw defenseman Kimmo Timonen leave last night's game due to a "lower-body" injury.

Northeast Division

-A goal by former Penguin Mark Recchi with 20 seconds left in regulation gave the Bruins a 4-3 win at Tampa Bay. Fire Ray Shero. Recchi added an assist while teammate Dennis Seidenberg recorded two assists. Tim Thomas made 31 saves in the victory. Steven Stamkos led the Lightning with a goal and an assist.

-The Lightning got a raw deal late in this game. Stamkos was penalized for this shoulder to shoulder hit on Boston's Gregory Campbell late in regulation. That led to a power play which Recchi scored on:

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-It wasn't all bad for Tampa Bay. Check out this wraparound goal by captain Vincent Lecavalier:

-Pittsburgh native Mike Weber had two goals and an assist for the Sabres in a 4-2 win at Edmonton. Teammate Jochen  Hecht added a goal and an assist while Ryan Miller made 29 saves in the victory.

-Miller recorded his 200th career win.

-The Senators recalled forward Zack Smith from Binghamton of the AHL.

-Senators general manager "Crying" Bryan Murray (right) is up to his old tricks. While complaining that Penguins defenseman Kris Letang did not receive any sort of supplementary punishment for a hit which injured Senators forward Jason Spezza Sunday, Murray suggested if Sidney Crosby had been injured, "They would have closed the league, wouldn't they?"

-Canadiens defenseman Josh Gorges missed last night's game due to a knee injury. He had a consecutive games streak of 150 games snapped.

-The Canadiens acquired defenseman James Wisniewski from the Islanders in exchange for a second-round pick in 2011 and a fifth-round pick in 2012.

-The Maple Leafs were stuck in New Jersey for two days after the blizzard which struck the East Coast this past weekend.

-The Maple Leafs recalled forward Joey Crabb from their AHL affiliate, also in Toronto.

Southeast Division

-Semyon Varlamov made 25 saves for the Capitals in a 3-0 shutout of the Canadiens. This was the first meeting between the two teams since the Canadiens upset the Capitals in the Eastern Conference quarterfinals last season.

-Check out this nifty backhanded goal by Washington's Jay Beagle:

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-Check out this nice backhanded pass by Washington's Nicklas Backstrom to set up Mike Green for a goal:

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-Washington captain Alex Ovechkin didn't have to deal with too much of a defense on this goal:

-Two goals by captain Eric Staal led the Hurricanes to a 4-3 win at Toronto. Patrick Dwyer added a goal and an assist for Carolina while Cam Ward made 34 saves in the victory. Phil Kessel scored two goals for the Maple Leafs.

-Check out one of Staal's goals:

-Kessel's first goal was a real rocket:

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-Happy times for Carolina's Jussi Jokinen:

-Carolina's Jeff Skinner kept his eyes on this puck:

-Concentrating times for Toronto's Jonas Gustavsson:

-Funny Face of the Night: Skinner battling with Toronto captain Dion Phaneuf:

-With forward Mathieu Perreault dealing with a broken nose, the Capitals recalled forward Keith Aucoin from Hershey of the AHL.

-The Hurricanes recalled forward Jon Matsumoto and defenseman Bryan Rodney from Charlotte of the AHL.

Central Division

-Former Penguin Ty Conklin made 25 saves for the Blues in a 3-1 defeat of the rival Blackhawks. Fire Ray Shero. Chicago had a four-game winning streak snapped.

-Fight of the Night: Chicago's John Scott and St. Louis' Cam Janssen:

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-Chicago captain Jonathan Toews left the game due to an "upper-body" injury following this hit by St. Louis' Matt D'Agostini:

-The Blackhawks activated forward Patrick Kane (ankle) from injured reserve.

-The Blues signed former Avalanche forward Marek Svatos to a one-year two-way contract. Svatos started the season with Omsk Avangard of the KHL.

Northwest Division

-Ryan Kesler had two goals and an assist for the Canucks in a 6-2 rout of the Flyers. Captain Henrik Sedin recorded three assists for Vancouver while teammate Daniel Sedin added a goal and an assist. Roberto Luongo made 35 saves in the victory. Daniel Briere netted a goal and an assist for Philadelphia.

-Check out this laser of a goal by Kesler:

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-Check out this sick pass by Vancouver's Alex Burrows to set up Daniel Sedin for a goal:

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-Check out this re-direction attempt by Kesler for his second goal:

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-Check out this give-and

-Flyers enforcer Jody Shelley was given a match penalty for a punch to the face of Canucks defenseman Andrew Alberts during a scrum late in play:

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-The Flyers lost in Vancouver for the first time since Jan. 17, 1989.

-Is Ryan Kesler a superstar?

-Darryl Sutter resigned as the Flames general manager and was replaced by assistant general manager Jay Feaster on an interim basis.

-Oilers defenseman and former Penguin Ryan Whitney left last night's game due to an ankle injury. He is Edmonton's leading scorer with 27 points.

-Edmonton forward Ales Hemsky returned to the lineup after missing 10 games due to a groin ailment.

-The Wild demoted defenseman Jared Spurgeon to Houston of the AHL.

Pacific Division

-Jonas Hiller made 31 saves for the Ducks in a 3-1 win at Phoenix.

-Coyotes forward and former Penguin Paul Bissonnette fought Ducks forward George Parros. Check out Bissonnette warning Parros to avoid tripping on a stray glove before the fight:

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-Funny Covered Face of the Night: This girl behind Parros and Bissonnette:

-Ducks captain Ryan Getzlaf left the game after taking a deflected shot to the face.

-Loui Eriksson had a goal and an assist for the Stars in a 4-2 win at Nashville. Andrew Raycroft made a whopping 44 saves in the victory. Colin Wilson scored both of the Predators' goals. Nashville has lost five consecutive games.

IIHF World Junior Championships

-Ducks prospect Kyle Palmieri had two goals and an assist for the United States in a 6-2 rout of Slovakia.

-Highlights:

-This game took on an ugly physical tone. Slovakia's Martin Marincin was kicked out for a hit to head on the United States' Jason Zucker:

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-Kings prospect Brayden Schenn had a goal and four assists for Canada in a 7-2 rout of the Czech Republic. Penguins prospect Simon Despres had one shot and was a plus-1 for Canada.

-Check out this cheap shot by Canada's Zack Kassian on the Czech Republic's Petr Senkerik:

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-Nice bit of denial of a head shot by TSN's "Pierre" McGuire. He couldn't be more of a cheerleader for Canada unless he had a skirt or pompoms.

-Senators prospect Robin Lehner made 30 saves for Sweden in a 2-0 shutout of Russia.

-Flames prospect Joni Ortio made 15 saves for Finland in a 4-0 shutout of Switzerland.

Norris Division

-Former Sharks forward Riley Armstrong, the brother of former Penguins forward Colby Armstrong, joined the Augsburger Panther of the DEL in Germany.

(Photos: Thrashers/Penguins-Justin K. Aller/Getty Images; Mario Lemieux-Peter Diana/Post-Gazette; Bladon-Penguins Hockey Cards; Rolston and Murray-Bruce Bennett/Getty Images; Canadiens/Capitals-Jacquelyn Martin/Associated Press; Hurricanes/Maple Leafs-Claus Andersen/Getty Images; Ducks/Coyotes-Ralph Freso/Associated Press)

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