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Empty Netter Assists - 04-08-13

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-As a result of the Devils losing last night to the Sabres, the Penguins officially clinched a playoff berth.

-"When I'm out there, I don't feel as frantic as [it looks], I'm pretty relaxed, pretty focused." - Craig Adams (above) on killing penalties.

-Chad Kolarik scored two goals for the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins who held off the rival Hershey Bears with a 4-3 home win. Brian Gibbons and Riley Holzapfel each recorded two assists for the Penguins while teammate Brad Thiessen made 31 saves. Wilkes-Barre/Scranton has won five consecutive games and has earned points in seven straight.

-Highlights:

-Kolarik moved into a tie with Hershey's Jeff Taffe for the AHL scoring lead with 63 points.

-Today would have been the 54th birthday of former Penguins defenseman Arto Javanainen. A second-round pick of the club in 1984, Javanainen was the first European draft pick in franchise history. A native of Finland, his NHL career amounted to 14 games with the Penguins and five points in 1984-85. After spending most of that season with the Penguins' AHL affiliate in Baltimore, Javanainen returned to his native Finland. He passed away Jan. 25, 2011 at the age of 51.

-After the Jump: Washington's Alex Ovechin keeps scoring and the Blackhawks also reach the postseason.

Atlantic Division

-The Flyers signed defenseman Mark Alt to an entry-level contract. Terms of the deal were not reported. A second-round pick of the Hurricanes in 2010, Alt was acqured in a trade in January.

-Flyers forward prospect Eric Wellwood, currently assigned to Adirondack of the AHL, was hospitalized after a skate cut the back of his right leg. Teammate Danny Syvret tweeted a gruesome image of the aftermath:

Northeast Division

-A shootout goal by Nathan Gerbe gave the Sabres a 3-2 win against the Devils. Ryan Miller made 37 saves for Buffalo which has won three consecutive games. New Jersey has lost seven consecutive games.

-Check out this tap-in regulation goal by Buffalo's Patrick Kaleta:

-Defensive Play of the Night: Check out this forecheck and steal by New Jersey's Steve Bernier which eventually led to a regulation goal by former Penguin Steve Sullivan:

-Fire Ray Shero.

-Check out the passing which led to this regulation goal by Buffalo's Steve Ott:

-Hit of the Night: Kaleta on New Jersey's Travis Zajac:

-Check out this effort by New Jersey's Dainius Zubrus which led to a short-handed goal by Mark Fayne:

Southeast Division

-Two goals by captain Alex Ovechkin led the Capitals to a 4-2 win against the Lightning. Joel Ward added a goal and an assist for Washington while teammate Jack Hillen recorded two assists. Michal Neuvirth made 28 saves in the victory. Captain Vincent Lecavalier had a goal and an assist for Tampa Bay.

-Check out this pass by Tampa Bay's Martin St. Louis to set up Lecavalier for a goal:

-Check out this deflection goal by Ovechkin:

-Tampa Bay goaltender Ben Bishop robbed Ovechkin of a goal here:

-Ovechkin was credited with an empty-net goal at the end of the game after Tampa Bay rookie Alex Killorn interfered with him from the bench:

-Neuvirth had issues with this puck:

-Ovechkin is now tied with Tampa Bay's Steven Stamkos for most goals in the league with 25.

-Scott Clemmensen made 40 saves for the Panthers in a 2-1 win against the Senators. Ottawa has lost four consecutive games.

-It wasn't all bad for the Senators. Check out this smooth pass by Jacob Silfverberg to set up Cory Conacher for a goal:

-A good look at the goal:

-Panthers coach Kevin Dineen accused officials of having no respect for his team.

Central Division

-Patrick Kane, Brandon Saad, Andrew Shaw and captain Jonathan Toews each had a goal and an assist for the Blackhawks in a 5-3 win against the Blackhawks. Ray Emery made 19 saves in the victory which clinched a playoff berth. Nick Spaling and captain Shea Weber each had a goal and an assist for Nashville.

-Check out this forecheck by Kane which allowed him to set up Toews for the eventual game-winning goal:

-Happy times in Chicago:

-Brian Elliott made 28 saves for the Blues in a 1-0 shutout of the Red Wings. It was his 19th career shutout. St. Louis has won four consecutive games.

-Check out this save through traffic by Elliott against Detroit's Jakub Kindl in the second period:

-An octopus hit the ice in Detroit:

-Elliott showed off his butterfly here:

-Detroit's Jimmy Howard snagged this puck:

-After this season's game was cancelled due to the lockout, the NHL officially announced the Winter Classic will be held at Michigan Stadium in Ann Arbour, Mich. Jan. 1, 2014. The Red Wings will host the Maple Leafs.

-The jerseys for the game were unveiled:

-EN Says: The Maple Leafs jersey looks like something the team has worn throughout its history. The Red Wings jersey looks like something you would buy at Wal-Mart.

Northwest Division

-Niklas Backstrom made 24 saves for the Wild in a 3-0 shutout of the Blue Jackets. It was his 28th career shutout. Jason Pominville had a goal and an assist for Minnesota.

-Check out the placement on this shot by Minnesota's Ryan Suter:

-Backstrom was surrounded by the enemy in his own crease:

-Minnesota's Charlie Coyle > Columbus' Sergei Bobrovsky:

-Happy times for Minnesota's Clayton Stoner and Backstrom:

-Wild forward Dany Heatley is scheduled to undergo surgery on his left shoulder Tuesday.

Pacific Division

-A shootout goal by Jamie Benn gave the Stars a 5-4 win against the Sharks. Rookie Alex Chiasson scored regulation two goals for Dallas while teammates Benn and Ray Whitney each recorded two assists. Justin Braun and Raffi Torres each had two assists for San Jose.

-Check out this spinning backhanded goal by San Jose's T.J. Galiardi:

-Lehtonen reached back to keep this puck out:

-Benn > San Jose's Antti Niemi:

-Shootout goals by Bobby Ryan, Saku Koivu and Corey Perry gave the Kings a 4-3 win against the Ducks. Matt Beleskey had a regulation goal and an assist for Anaheim while teammate Sheldon Souray recorded two assists. Viktor Fasth mad 35 saves in the victory. Captain Dustin Brown led Los Angeles with a regulation goal and an assist.

-Ducks captain/forward Ryan Getzlaf is sidelined due to a leg injury.

-The Kings and Ducks want to stage an outdoor game somewhere in Southern California.

-Stars forward Lane MacDermid is sidelined due to an "upper-body" injury.

-The Coyotes assigned former Penguins goaltending prospect Chad Johnson to Portland of the AHL.

Norris Division

-The Frozen Four will have a Nutmeg State feel to it.

(Photos: Adams-Justin K. Aller/Getty Images; Lightning/Capitals-Mitchell Layton/Getty Images; Senators/Panthers-Joel Auerbach/Getty Images; Predators/Blackhawks-Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images; Blues/Red Wings and Winter Classic-Paul Sancya/Associated Press; Wild/Blue Jackets-Kirk Irwin/Getty Images and Mike Munden/Associated Press; Stars/Sharks-Josie Lepe/Bay Area News Group/Associated Press)

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