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Empty Netter Assists - 12-12-12

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-The NHL and NHLPA will resume negotiations today along with the presence of a federal mediator.

-"The fact we haven't really even covered everything is kind of the scary part." - Sidney Crosby on negotiations.

-"I hate to say it, but the (refereeing) over there is … pretty bad." - Deryk Engelland on playing in Norway.

-Welcome back James Neal (right) ... to practice at least.

-A lack of snow tires forced Brooks Orpik to return to Pittsburgh for workouts.

-The lockout has been rough on businesses surrounding Consol Energy Center.

-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defensemen Simon Despres, Brian Strait and goaltender Jeff Zatkoff are day to day due to undisclosed injuries.

-With Zatkoff on the mend, it's time for goaltender Brad Thiessen to step up.

-The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins signed former Mercyhurst goaltender Ryan Zapolski to a professional tryout contract.

-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins defenseman Joe Morrow needs some work in the defensive zone.

-This is from Saturday night. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins forward/enforcer Steve MacIntyre had a showdown with the Portland Pirates' Joel "Wrecker" Rechlicz. The "Wrecker" got wrecked:

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-Dustin Jeffrey recorded an assist for Medvescak Zagreb in a 3-0 defeat of Fehervar AV19 in Austria's EBEL.

-Today would've been the 61st birthday of former Penguins defenseman Steve Durbano. Acquired midway through the 1973-74 season along with Ab DeMarco Jr. and Bob Kelly in a deal which sent Bryan Watson, Greg Polis and a draft pick to the Blues, "Mental Case" spent parts of three seasons with the Penguins. He finished 1973-74 by appearing in 33 games for the Penguins and scoring 18 points while accumulating 138 penalty minutes. In 1974-75, Durbano was limited to one game, one assist and 10 penalty minutes due to a wrist injury. After 32 games, eight assists and a team-leading 161 penalty minutes, Durbano was traded to the Kansas City Scouts along with Chuck Arnason and a draft pick for for Simon Nolet, Ed Gilbert and a draft pick. In 66 regular season games with the Penguins, Durbano scored 27 points and recorded 309 penalty minutes. Durbano passed away Nov. 16, 2002 at the age of 50.

Southeast Division

-Jets defenseman Mark Stuart (right) has joined the Florida Everblades, the ECHL affiliate of the Hurricanes and Lightning.

Pacific Division

-Coyotes forward and former Penguin Nick Johnson has joined the Idaho Steelheads, the Stars' ECHL affiliate.

Norris Division

-Greg Wyshynski of Yahoo! examines Gary Bettman's 20 years as NHL commissioner.

-Former Sabres/Blues/Oilers forward Jochen Hecht has joined the Adler Mannheim of Germany's DEL.

-Former Maple Leafs/Rangers forward Jeremy Williams has joined Eispiraten Crimmitschau of German's 2nd Bundesliga league.

-Former Bruins/Wild forward Petr Kalus has joined Djurgården of Sweden's Allsvenskan.

-United State Olympic star Mike Eruzione is putting his stick and jersey he scored his "Miracle on Ice" goal in the 1980 Winter Olympics up for auction.

(Photos: Neal-Claus Andersen/Getty Images; Stuart-Marianne Helm/Getty Images)

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