Empty Netter Assists - 12-26-12

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .


-An "upper-body" injury has curtailed the amount of fighting Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins forward Zach Sill (right) has engaged in this season.

-Happy 75th birthday to former Penguins forward and coach Gene Ubriaco. Acquired from Hershey of the AHL in the 1967 offseason in exchange for Jeannot Gilbert, Ubriaco, the first player in franchise history to wear No. 11, spent parts of two seasons with the Penguins as a player. During the franchise's inaugural season of 1967-68, Ubriaco appeared in 65 games and scored 33 points. After 49 games and 26 points in 198-69, Ubriaco was traded to the Oakland Seals along with Earl Ingarfield and Dick Mattiussi in exchange for Bryan Watson, George Swarbrick and Tracy Pratt. In 114 regular season games, he scored 59 points. Ubriaco returned to Pittsburgh when he was hired as coach in the 1988 offseason. He managed to lead the 1988-89 club to a 40-33-7 record as the Penguins returned to the postseason for the first time in seven years. After sweeping the Rangers, 4-0, in the Patrick Division semifinal, the Penguins fell to the rival Flyers, 4-3, in the division final. After 26 games and a 10-14-2 record in 1989-90, Ubriaco was fired and replaced by Craig Patrick. In 106 regular season games as the Penguins' coach, Ubriaco had a record of 50-47-9. One of four men to both play for and coach the Penguins (Rick Kehoe, Ed Olczyk and Ken Schinkel are the others), Ubriaco currently serves as senior advisor/director of hockey operations for the Chicago Wolves of the AHL.

Atlantic Division

-Former Flyers coach/general manager Keith Allen is fighting the good fight against dementia.

Central Division

-The Red Wings owe the city of Detroit quite a bit of money dating back to 1980.

Norris Division

-Former Thrashers/Panthers forward Kamil Piros has joined HC Litvinov of the Czech Extraliga.

IIHF World Junior Championships

-The World Junior Championships begin today in Ufa, Russia.

-Penguins prospects playing in the tournament include:

Theodor Blueger, center - Latvia
Scott Harrington, defenseman - Canada
Olli Maatta (right), defenseman - Finland

Additionally, Erie Otters goaltender Oscar Dansk, a Blue Jackets prospect, is playing for Sweden.

(Photos: Sill-Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins; Maatta-Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)

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