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Empty Netter Assists - 04-27-13

Written by Seth Rorabaugh on .

Penguins

-"As soon as they say I can play. I'll be there." - Sidney Crosby.

-Welcome back James Neal and Paul Martin (above, with Crosby).

-Welcome back Jordan Staal.

-Citing a desire to spend more time with his family, Tomas Vokoun no longer wants to play for the Czech Republic's national team.

-Bylsma speaks:

-Crosby speaks:

-Martin speaks:

-Neal speaks:

-The Wilkes-Barre/Scranton Penguins open their first round best-of-five series against the Binghamton Senators tonight.

-Today would've been the 72nd birthday of former Penguins and Pittsburgh Hornets forward Bob Dillabough. Claimed from the Bruins in the 1967 expansion draft, Dillabough spent parts of two seasons with the Penguins. He appeared in 47 games and recorded 19 points in the Penguins'  inaugural season in 1967-68. The following season, after 14 games and no points, he was traded to the Oakland Seal in exchange for Bill Harris. In 62 games with the Penguins, Dillabough recorded 19 points. He passed away in 1997 at the age of 55.

-Happy 57th birthday to former Penguins forward Anders Hakansson. Acquired early in the 1982-83 season along with Ron Meighan and a draft pick in exchange for George Ferguson and a draft pick, Hakansson, the first Swedish and European player in franchise history, spent part of only one season with the Penguins. In 62 games that campaign, he recorded 21 points. The following offseason, he was traded to the Kings in exchange for Kevin Stevens.

-After the Jump: Tampa Bay's Martin St. Louis can make some history and the Wild blows a chances to secure a playoff berth.

Atlantic Division

-“If it meant something, I was going to play, but it doesn’t. Getting booed for two hours for no reason, I don’t know if I was really up to it. If it meant something, I didn’t mind.” - Devils goaltender Martin Brodeur on why he isn't starting the Devils' season finale against the Rangers in New York today.

Northeast Division

-A shootout goal by Thomas Vanek gave the Sabres a 2-1 win against the Islanders. Ryan Miller made 30 saves in the victory.

-Fluky Goal of the Night: New York's Keith Aucoin scored after Miller misplayed this dump in:

-New York's Evgeni Nabokov kept an eye on this puck:

-Following the game, Sabres forward Jochen Hecht announced his retirement. In 14 seasons in the NHL, Hecht appeared in 833 career games with the Blues, Oilers and Sabres and recorded 463 points.

-Hecht (left) had a moment with teammate John Scott after the game:

-Sabres season ticket prices will be rising by an average of four percent next season.

-Will the Sabres bring back interim head coach Ron Rolston?

-The Bruins assigned defenseman Matt Bartkowski , a native of Mt. Lebanon, to Providence of the AHL.

Southeast Division

-If Lightning forward Martin St. Louis hangs on to his lead in the scoring race, he would be the oldest winner of the Art Ross Trophy at the age of 37.

-The Lightning assigned defenseman Radko Gudas and forward Richard Panik to Syracuse of the AHL.

-Panthers forward Peter Mueller was named Florida's nominee for the Masterton Trophy.

-Hurricanes captain/forward Eric Staal has been nominated for the King Clancy Memorial Trophy which acknowledges contributions off the ice.

-Due to wrist and foot injuries, Jets forward Evander Kane will not play for Team Canada in next month's IIHF World championships.

Central Division

-Corey Crawford made 25 saves for the Blackhawks in a 3-1 win against the Flames. Calgary finished its season with a three-game losing streak.

-Check out the placement on this shot by Chicago's Marcus Kruger:

-Blackhawks forward and Gibsonia native Brandon Saad fended off a stick check from Calgary's Mark Giordano:

-Blackhawks defenseman and former Penguin Michal Rozsival flipped a puck over a stick on puck by Calgary's Carter Bancks:

-The Blackhawks recalled forwards Jimmy Hayes, Jeremy Morin, Brandon Pirri, Ben Smith, defensemen Ryan Stanton, Adam Clendening, Shawn Lalonde, Steve Montador and goaltender Henrik Karlsson from Rockford of the AHL.

-The Blue Jackets signed forward Cam Atkinson to a two-year contract extension worth a total of $2.3 million. In the final year of a two-way contract, Atkinson's new contract will have a salary cap hit of $1.15 million. In 34 games this season, Atkinson, 23, has 16 points (eight goals, eight assists).

-EN Says: Atkinson has been a solid player for the Blue Jackets this season and has contributed to their late season push for a postseason appearance. He provides energy and isn't afraid to go to the net while offering a little bit of a scoring touch. This is a fair contract.

-The Predators recalled forward Filip Forsberg from Milwaukee of the AHL and assigned forwards Daniel Bang and Kevin Henderson to Milwaukee.

-The Red Wings need at least one point against the Stars today in order to clich a playoff berth.

Northwest Division

-Former Penguin Corey Potter and rookie Nail Yakupov each scored two goals for the Oilers in a 6-1 rout of the Wild. Fire Ray Shero. Jordan Eberle and Taylor Hall each added a goal and two assists for Edmonton while teammates Sam Gagner and Ryan Smyth each recorded two assists. Nikolai Khabibulin made 38 saves in the victory. The loss denied Minnesota a chance at securing a playoff berth.

-Check out the placement on this shot by Hall:

-Check out this feed by Eberle to set up Potter for his second goal:

-Fire Ray Shero.

-Check out this pass by Hall to set up Yakupov:

-Check out the placement on this shot by Eberle:

-Minnesota's Zenon Konopka (right) tried to explain his Mario Lemieux poster collection to teammate Torrey Mitchell:

-We think.

-The Wild faces a must-win game against the Avalanche tonight.

-Shootout goals by Matt Duchene and P.A. Parenteau gave the Avalanche a 5-4 win against the Coyotes. Parenteau added a regulation goal and an assist while Duchene recorded three assists. Semyon Varlamov was credited with the win by making six saves in relief of injured starter Jean-Sebastien Giguere (groin). Antoine Vermette led Phoenix with two regulation goals.

-Colorado's Stefan Elliot scored by clanking a this puck off both posts:

-Defensive Play of the Night: Check out this "save" by Phoenix's Michael Stone:

-Happy times for the Avalanche. Not so much for Phoenix's Mike Smith:

-Attentive times for Colorado's John Mitchell from the bench:

-Mitchell and Phoenix's Boyd Gordon were ready for this faceoff:

-Phoenix captain Shane Doan being popular:

-Avalanche defenseman Ryan Wilson is sidelined due to a high ankle sprain.

-The Wild recalled forward Carson McMillan from Houston of the AHL.

-Canucks defenseman Kevin Bieksa was named Vancouver's nominee for the Masterton Trophy.

Pacific Division

-Coyotes forward Lauri Kopikoski returned to the lineup after being sidelined since March 25 due to a concussion.

-The Stars assigned forward Matt Fraser to Texas of the AHL.

(Photos: Crosby/Martin-Keith Srakocic/Associated Press; Islanders/Sabres-Gary Wiepert/Associated Press; Flames/Blackhawks-Jonathan Daniel/Getty Images; Oilers/Wild-Ann Heisenfelt/Associated Press; Avalanche/Coyotes-Ross D. Franklin/Associated Press and Christian Petersen/Getty Images)

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