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Empty Netter Assists - 04-25-12

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-"As a general manager, I signed every one of those players, re-signed them or traded for them, so I'm responsible for the outcome of the playoffs." - Ray Shero (above).

-James Neal (hand), Steve Sullivan (foot), Paul Martin (concussion-like symptons), Kris Letang (hip) and Matt Niskanen (shoulder) each finished the season with injuries.

-''I love being here and I love the guys in the room. And that's a huge factor for myself.'' - Jordan Staal on his future.

-Shero speaks:

-Dan Bylsma speaks:

-Letang speaks:

-Marc-Andre Fleury speaks:

-Sidney Crosby speaks:

-Jordan Staal speaks:

-Pascal Dupuis:

-Evgeni Malkin speaks:

-Chris Kunitz speaks:

-Matt Niskanen speaks:

-Matt Cooke speaks:

-The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins signed forward Dominik Uher and defenseman Reid McNeill to amateur tryout contracts. Uher was a fifth-round pick in 2011 while McNeil was drafted in the sixth-round of 2010.

-Happy 29th birthday to former Penguins goaltender Andy Chiodo (right). A seventh-round pick in 2003, Chiodo's only NHL season saw him spend eight games with the 2003-04 Penguins. He had a record of 3-4-1 during that span and sported a 3.64 goals against average and .892 save percentage. Chiodo's biggest claim to Penguins fame was the fact he was the winning goaltender in a 4-3 overtime win at Phoenix, Feb. 25, 2004. That win snapped a franchise record 18-game winless streak. After spending the 2004-05 and 2005-06 seasons with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton and Wheeling, Chiodo signed with Jokerit Helsinki in Finland during the 2006 offseason. He is currently a member of Klagenfurter AC in the EBHL in Austria.

-Happy 39th birthday to former Penguins forward Alek Stojanov. Acquired at the 1996 trade deadline in an imfamous deal which sent future all-star Markus Naslund to the Canucks, Stojanov spent parts of two seasons with the Penguins. He finished the 1995-96 season by appearing in 10 games for the Penguins and scored one goal. In nine postseason games that spring, he failed to record a point. The 1996-97 season saw him play in 35 games and score five points. After a serious car accident, he he spent the 1997-98 season with Syracuse of the AHL. Following that season, the Penguins released him. Stojanov appeared in 45 regular season games for the Penguins and scored six points. The trade with Vancouver is considered one of the worst in franchise history.

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-Happy 59th birthday to former Penguins forward Bob Stumpf. Acquired midway through the 1974-75 season in a deal which sent Bernie Lukowich to the Blues, Stumpf finished his only NHL season by appearing in three games for the Penguins and failed to record a point.. He retired from professioinal hockey after spending the following season with Hershey of the AHL.

Playoff Stuff
Rangers - Senators

-"We have a chance to spoil their season. How often is it that a No. 8 seed gets two cracks to end a series?" - Senators forward Jason Spezza on tomorrow's Game 7.

-Senators forward Milan Michalek will not be disciplined for kicking Rangers defenseman Dan Girardi with a skate in Game 6.

Bruins - Capitals

-“It’s its own unique beast. It’s nerve-racking and fun at the same time." - Bruins goaltender Tim Thomas on Game 7s.

-“I don’t give a [expletive] this time of year. Whatever helps the team." - Bruins forward Shawn Thornton on being a healthy scratch in the playoffs.

-“For them to judge what knocks you down, they don’t know your balance or what not on the play. They’re sitting at home watching on TV. I don’t really care what they say. They have no impact on my game, my life. They mean nothing.” - Bruins forward Brad Marchand (right) on being accused of diving.

I mean, there’s no point in having nerves right now.” - Capitals goaltender Braden Holtby on tonight's Game 7.

Panthers - Devils

-An overtime goal and an assist by Travis Zajac gave the Devils a 3-2 win against the Panthers in Game 6. Ilya Kovalchuk added a goal and an assist for New Jersey while Martin Brodeur made all of 14 saves in the victory.

-Zajac's goal:

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-Sad times for Florida's Scott Clemmensen:

-Pass of the Night: Zajac setting up Kovalchuk on the back door:

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-Happy times in New Jersey:

-Bright times in New Jersey:

-Cool Photo of the Night: Florida's Brian Campbell defending New Jersey's Patrik Elias at center ice:

-Toothy times for Florida's Stephen Weiss:

-The Panthers' only other Game 7 was a 4-1 win against the Penguins in the 1996 Eastern Conference final.

-With goaltender Jacob Markstrom dealing with an undisclosed injury, the Panthers recalled goaltender Jacob Markstrom from San Antonio of the AHL.

Flyers

-"I think it's one of the reasons I've made it this far, if I can say that. Because I understand the game. I'm not the most skilled guy. But I understand the game, and I try to position myself to make plays. Try to understand what teams do." - Flyers forward and former Penguin Maxime Talbot (right).

-Should Claude Giroux be the Flyers' next captain?

-Flyers defenseman Andrej Meszaros resumed practicing for the first time since undergoing back surgery March 21.

-As if the Flyers weren't loathsome enough, it turns out they're fans of Nickelback.

Blues - Kings

-"Coaches have always told me, 'Shoot the puck, shoot the puck,' but they never necessarily told me where I'm getting my scoring chances from. But (Blues coach Ken Hitchcock) broke it down. I get all my scoring chances from the forecheck, from the backcheck, putting pressure on guys and taking away the opposition's time and space. I just never realized that until I watched some game tape. They're usually off turnovers. That made me want to check harder after seeing that." - Blues forward T.J. Oshie.

-"There was no lack of communication between Dean and I that we were disappointed with where we were at. The only thing that we communicated to Dean is that not making the playoffs was not an option." - Kings owner Tim Leiweke on general manager Dean Lombardi's decision to fire head coach Terry Murray and replace him with Darryl Sutter during the season.

Coyotes - Predators

-"It's a feeling you can never explain to someone." - Coyotes defenseman Oliver Ekman-Larsson (right) on scoring his first career postseason goal.

Non-Playoff Stuff
Central Division

-Red Wings forward Dan Cleary will undergo surgery on his left knee.

Northwest Division

-The Canucks demoted forward Byron Bitz to Chicago of the AHL.

-Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo said he would be willing to waive his no-trade clause if asked to.

-“I have every bit of confidence in Alain. It gets exasperating sometimes. This is the winningest coach in the team’s history and we just won two Presidents’ Trophys and lost the seventh game of the Stanley Cup final. Is that when you’re going to decide to start getting rid of people? I know a lot of teams that are envious of where this team is in a lot of different ways and having a good head coach is one reason they’re envious. Alain is an excellent NHL coach.” - Canucks general managerin Mike Gillis on the status of head coach Alain Vigneault (right).

-"I don't regret that move. I'd do it again. I'd do it today." - Gillis on trading forward Cody Hodgson at the trade deadline to the Sabres in exchange for forward Zack Kassian. Gillis labeled many issues in dealing with Hodgson as motivation.

Pacific Division

-"I take first responsibility. The plan, the pieces that we put together, didn't work. Did we get everything out of this team? Did we have a successful season? The answers would be no on both of those counts." - Sharks defenseman Doug Wilson on his team's first-round exit from the postseason.

Patrick Division

-The Rangers' Henrik Lundqvist, Los Angeles' Jonathan Quick and Nashville's Pekka Rinne (right) were named finalists for the Vezina Trophy.

-Senators captain Daniel Alfredsson, Maple Leafs forward Joffrey Lupul and Canadiens forward Max Pacioretty were named for the Masterton Trophy.

-St. Louis' Doug Armstrong, Nashville's David Poile and Florida's Dale Tallon were named finalists for the general manager of the year award.

IIHF World Championships

-Blackhawks forward Patrick Sharp and defenseman Duncan Keith will play for Team Canada in next month's World Championships.

-Chicago captain Jonathan Toews and Crosby each declined invitations.

(Photos: Shero-Gene J. Puskar; Chiodo-Penguins Hockey Cards; Marchand-Bruce Bennett/Getty Images; Panthers/Devils-Bruce Bennett/Getty Images Bruce Bennett/Getty Images, Chris Chambers/Getty Images and Julio Cortez/Associated Press; Talbot-Paul Bereswill/Getty Images; Ekman-Larsson-Christian Petersen/Getty Images; Vigneault-Dale MacMillan/Getty Images; Rinne-Jeff Gross/Getty Images)

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