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Empty Netter Assists - 04-04-12

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-Dave Molinari's recap from last night's game. Matt Niskanen and the great Joe Vitale each left with undisclosed injuries.

-The Boston Globe's recap. Bruins defenseman Johnny Boychuk left due to a left leg injury.

-The Associated Press' recap. โ€œWe did a good job coming in here and playing a tough Bruins team and fighting for that home-ice advantage.โ€ - Neal

-NHL.com's recap. Neal reached the 40-goal mark.

-Mike Lange's goal calls.

-Highlights:

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-Andrew Ference versus James Neal:

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-A good look at the tilt:

-A good look at Kris Letang embellishing a high-sticking call:

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-Tyler Kennedy got a little extra something on this stick:

-Funny Face of the Night: Pascal Dupuis:

-Second Funny Face of the Night: Sidney Crosby:

-Beleaguered Face of the Night: Boston coach Claude Julien:

-Boston's Marty Turco had issues with this puck:

-Boston's Brad Marchand took spill in front of the Penguins' bench:

-Dan Bylsma speaks:

-Sidney Crosby speaks:

-Mike Milbury offered a forced at gunpoint by NBC executives sincere apology for his comments on Dan Bylsma and Sidney Crosby. Sort of.

-"He was obviously trying to hurt me. We all know that.โ€ - Flyers forward Daniel Briere on Joe Vitale's hit Sunday which injured Briere.

-Scott Munroe made 21 saves for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins in a 2-1 loss to the Norfolk Admirals.

-Andrew Hotham had a goal and two assists for the Wheeling Nailers who defeated the Kalamazoo Wings, 4-2, in Game 1 of their Eastern Conference quarterfinal series. Patrick Killeen made 25 saves in the victory. Wheeling leads the best-of-five series, 1-0.

-Happy 42nd birthday to former Penguins forward Mike Needham (right). A sixth-round pick in 1989, Needham spent parts of three seasons with the Penguins. Recalled by the Penguins from Muskegon of the IHL during the 1992 playoffs, appreared in five games for the Penguins during that Stanley Cup run and scored a goal as the franchise won its second championship. Needham formed the short-lived "Muskegon Line" with Jock Callendar and Dave Michayluk. Needham spent the bulk of the 1992-93 season in Pittsburgh and recorded 13 points in 56 games. During that spring's postseason, he saw action in nine games and scored one goal. The following season, he appeared in 25 games and scored one goal for the Penguins before being traded to the Stars in exchange for Jim McKenzie. In 81 regular season games with the Penguins, Needham recorded 14 points. In 14 postseason games, he scored two goals.

-Happy 38th birthday to former Penguins forward Lasse Pirjeta. Acquired at the 2004 trade deadline in a deal which sent Brian Holzinger to the Blue Jackets, Pirjeta spent parts of two seasons with the Penguins. Pirjeta finished 2003-04 by playing in 13 games and scoring 12 points for the Penguins. Following the 2004-05 lockout, Pirjeta appeared in 25 games for the Penguins in 2005-06 and scored seven points. Midway through the season, he was assigned to Kloten of the NLA in Switzerland. In 38 games with the Penguins, he recorded 19 points.

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Atlantic Division

-Scoreboard Watch for the Penguins: Marian Gaborik and Ryan McDonagh each had a goal and an assist for the Rangers who beat the rival Flyers, 5-3. Brad Richards recorded two assists for New York while teammate Henrik Lundqvist made 37 saves. Jackub Voracek netted a goal and an assist for Philadelphia. The Rangers clinched the Atlantic Division and the first seed in the playoffs. The Flyers are in fifth place in the Eastern Conference and third place in the Atlantic Division with 101 points, three fewer than the Penguins.

-Check out this little bit of robbery by Lundqvist on Philadelphia's Wayne Simmonds:

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-The Rangers swept the season series from the Flyers for the first time since 1971-72.

-A goal and an assist by Patrik Elias led the Devils to a 3-1 win against the rival Islanders. Zach Parise recorded two assists for New Jersey while teammate Johan Hedberg made 19 saves.

-New Jersey's Steve Bernier kicked up some ice here on this hit against New York's Andrew MacDonald:

-Devils forward Jacob Josefsen will be sidelined four to six weeks due to a fractured left wrist.

-New Jersey forward David Clarkson is dealing with a "lower-body" injury.

-The Devils recalled forward Stephen Gionta from Albany of the AHL.

Northeast Division

-Two goals by Derek Roy, including one in overtime, gave the Sabres a dramatic 6-5 comeback win against the rival Maple Leafs. Alexander Sulzer collected two goals and an assist for Buffalo while teammate Tyler Ennis had a goal and an assist. Ryan Miller made 20 saves in the victory. Tyler Bozak led Toronto with two goals and an assist.

-Roy's overtime goal:

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-Pass of the Night: Check out this pass from Toronto's Phil Kessel to set up Bozak:

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-Check out the concentration and puck control by Toronto's Jake Gardiner on this goal:

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-Hit of the Night: Buffalo's Marcus Foligno on Toronto's Carl Gunnarsson:

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-Happy times in Buffalo:

-"It was just a wild one, and it was one of the best feelings ever to win that one." - Ennis.

-The Sabres signed forward Dan Catenacci, a third-round pick in 2011, to a three-year, entry-level contract and goaltender Connor Knapp, a sixth-round pick in 2009, to a two-year entry-level contract.

-The Canadiens recalled goaltender Robert Mayer and forward Gabriel Dumont from Hamilton of the AHL.

-The Bruins recalled forward Lane MacDermid from Providence of the AHL.

Southeast Division

-Two goals by captain Andrew Ladd, including one in overtime, gave the Jets a wild 5-4 comeback win against the Panthers. Zach Bogosian and Bryan Little each had a goal and an assist for Winnipeg while teammate Dustin Byfgulien and Blake Wheeler each recorded two assists. Ondrej Pavelec made 34 saves in the victory. Tomas Fleischmann, Marco Sturm and Kris Versteeg each had a goal and an assist.

-Ladd's goal:

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-Cam Ward made 38 saves for the Hurricanes who beat the Senators, 2-1. Ottawa had a four-game winning streak snapped.

-Defensive Play of the Night: Check out this "save" by Ottawa's Erik Karlsson against Carolina's Jeff Skinner:

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-Capitals forward Brooks Laich guaranteed his team will make the postseason.

Central Division

-A shootout goal by Alexander Radulov gave the Predators a 2-1 win against the Wild. Anders Lindback made 25 saves in the victory. Minnesota had a three-game winning streak snapped.

-The Predators recalled goaltender Chet Pickard from Cincinnati of the ECHL.

-Blue Jackets defenseman Jack Johnson will play for Team USA in the IIHF World Championships.

-A good look at the lid of Columbus' Allen York:

Northwest Division

-Shootout goals by Alex Burrows, Alexander Edler and Maxim Lapierre gave the Canucks a 5-4 win against the Ducks. Burrows scored two regulation goals for Vancouver while teammate Dan Hamhuis and captain Henrik Sedin each recorded two assists. Corey Schneider made nine saves in the victory. Corey Perry and Devante Smith-Pelley each had regulation goal and an assist for Anaheim.

-Check out this pass from Sedin to set up Burrows:

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-Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo was pulled after allowing four goals on 15 shots.

-Oilers coach Tom Renney was fined $10,000 for suggesting on-ice officials were giving power plays to the Kings in order to get them into the playoffs.

Pacific Division

-A goal and an assist by Logan Couture led the Sharks to a 5-2 win against the Stars. Antti Niemi made 29 saves in the victory. Dallas has lost three consecutive games.

-Mike Smith made a shopping 54 saves for the Coyotes who beat the Blue Jackets, 2-0. It was his eighth shutout of the season. Phoenix has won three consecutive games.

-Save of the Night: Phoenix's Mike Smith against Columbus' James Wisniewski:

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-Smith and backup Jason LaBarbera having a moment:

-The Ducks signed forward Chris Wagner, a fifth-round pick in 2010, to a three-year entry-level contract.

Adams Division

-Former Blues goaltender Marek Schwarz has joined HC Sparta Praha of the Czech Extraliga.

(Photos: Penguins/Bruins-Elsa/Getty Images; Needham-Penguins Hockey Cards; Islanders/Devils-Bruce Bennett/Getty Images; Maple Leafs/Sabres-Devin Duprey/Associated Press; Blue Jackets/Coyotes-Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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