Empty Netter Assists - 06-22-13

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .


-Happy 46th birthday to former Penguins defenseman Paul Stanton (right). An eighth-round pick in 1985, Stanton spent three seasons with the Penguins. He made his NHL debut in 1990-91 and appeared in 75 games while scoring 23 points. He appeared in 22 playoff games that season and contributed three points as the Penguins won their first Stanley Cup title. In 1991-92, Stanton was limited to 54 games and 10 points, but appeared in all 21 of the team's postseason games and eight points as the franchise successfully defended its Stanley Cup title. Stanton rebounded during the team's historic 1992-93 campaign by playing in 77 games for the Presidents' Trophy champions and scoring 16 points. In the 1993 offseason, Stanton was traded to the Bruins in exchange for a draft pick. In 206 regular season games with the Penguins, Stanton recorded 49 points. In 44 postseason games, he scored 12 points.

-Happy 52nd birthday to former Penguins forward Steve Gatzos. A second-round pick in 1981, Gatzos spent parts of four seasons with the Penguins. As a rookie, Gatzos scored 14 points in 16 games in 1981-82. Gatzos appeared in 44 games in 1982-83 but only scored 13 points. Gatzos totals continued to fall in 1983-84 as he only played in 23 games and recorded six points. In his final NHL season, Gatzos appreared in six games and recorded two assists in 1985-86. The following offseason, Gatzos joined the Tilburg Trappers in Holland. In 89 games with the Penguins, Gatzos scored 35 points.

Playoff Stuff
Blackhawks - Bruins

-Blackhawks forward Bryan Bickell said Bruins captain/defenseman Zdeno Chara "doesn’t like getting hit.”

-"Honestly, I don't know where they would get that scouting report from. He definitely doesn't mind the physical play at all." - Bruins forward Milan Lucic on Chara.

"Honestly, I don't know where they would get that scouting report from," Lucic said on Friday. "He definitely doesn't mind the physical play at all. - See more at:
doesn’t like getting hit,”

-"You don't really know what to expect in this series. Game 1 you had three overtimes, Game 2 was a tight 2-1 game, then they took it to us in Game 3 and in Game 4 you see 11 goals. We're not really sure what to expect." - Blackhawks forward Patrick Kane (right).

-After skipping practice Friday, Blackhawks forward and former Penguin Marian Hossa is expected to play in Game 5.

-Blackhawks defensemand and former Penguin Michal Rozsival (right) is average over 23 minutes a game in the Stanley Cup Final.

-Bruins forward Carl Soderberg could return to the Bruins' lineup for Game 5.

-Could Lucic appear in a "Dumb and Dumber" sequel?

Non-Playoff Stuff
Atlantic Division

-The Rangers officially introduced former Canucks/Canadiens coach Alain Vigneault as head coach.

-EN Says: Vigneault has shown an ability to coach high-scoring talent in Vancouver. He should be able to kick start the Rangers' stagnant offense.

-"We needed a change in style. There were a number of guys who were getting the crap kicked out of them in our end. We needed to move the puck out quick. [Our defensive] style was perfect for a couple of years, but it started to wear our team out . . . The injuries we had this year, it started to take a toll on our club." - Rangers general manager and former Penguins forward Glen Sather on adopting a more offensive approach under Vigneault than the one employed by former coach John Tortorella.

Northwest Division

-Flooding which has forced evacuations in Calgary has also struck the Scotiabank Saddledome, home of the Flames. Water was up to the 10th row of seats and completely submerged many parts of the building including the event level, the locker rooms and control center for the video board.

-The Saddledome:

-According to various outlets, the Canucks are expected to hire former Rangers/Lightning head coach John Tortorella as their next head coach.

-The Canucks' new AHL affiliate in Utica, N.H., will be called the Comets.

Pacific Division

-The Stars hired former Sabres coach Lindy Ruff as head coach.

-EN Says: Ruff is a good coach and has shown ability to be pretty adaptable to any situation or group of players. There's a nice core group of players in Dallas for him to work with. It shouldn't be a challenge for him to lead this team back to the postseason.

-“I definitely like his style. He’s no-nonsense, work hard, get right at it. I like that.” - Stars defenseman Stephane Robidas.

-Ruff is no stranger to using advanced statistics.

-"How did I know that was going to be the first question?" - Ruff on being the coach of the Sabres when they lost to the Stars in the 1999 Stanley Cup final on a controversial goal by Stars forward Brett Hull in Game 6 of the series.

-The Coyotes agreed to a five-year contract extension with head coach Dave Tippett (right).

-EN Says: Tippett is one of the top assets in the organization. Keeping him bring a sense of stability to a franchise with a lot of question marks.

Smythe Division

-Since 2000, no league has had more parity than the NHL.

(Photos: Stanton-Penguins Hockey Cards; Rozsival-Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images; Saddledome-Jeff McIntosh/Canadian Press; Tippett-Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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