Around the Net – your afternoon skate around the league

Around the Net will be back on its daily schedule starting today!

First off, let me apologize for not posting an Around the Net for the past two days. As I told you, Friday was a crazy day and I was pulled in too many other directions. As for yesterday, I didn’t want anything else to take away from the Consol Energy Tour blog… Around the Net will be back on its daily schedule starting today!

First of all, I have an announcement to make.

I have teamed up with George Von Benko, a veteran of the Pittsburgh Sports scene. George has been covering Pittsburgh sports for over 30 years, is the voice of Duquesne University Basketball, has hosted Pitt Post Game shows and hosts a weekly Sportsline Show on WMBS Radio (590AM) in Uniontown from 10:15 to 12 noon every Saturday. He covers the Penguins, Steelers and Pirates and will potentially be providing some content on all three as the site evolves. His first contribution is a ten minute interview with Ray Shero that he conducted on Thursday evening. It aired on his show yesterday afternoon, but it will be here for your review later this afternoon. I will also be posting some interviews George did with some of the Penguins Greats who were in town for the celebration. Hope you guys enjoy!

On to the business at hand… Around the Net – your afternoon skate around the league.

First of all, as I tweeted out earlier this morning, the Penguins have recalled winger Eric Tangradi. Personally, I think that they should have recalled him yesterday. I realize that the Baby Pens had a game that was needed to clinch a playoff spot, but his big body could have been a help in front of Johan Hedberg. Here is the official release.


The Pittsburgh Penguins have recalled left winger Eric Tangradi from Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League, it was announced by executive vice president and general manager Ray Shero.

Tangradi, 21, has posted 17 goals and 39 points through 65 contests in his first season with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton. He paces the team with eight power-play tallies on the year.

Prior to joining Wilkes-Barre/Scranton, the 6-foot-4, 221-pound forward played three seasons with Belleville of the Ontario Hockey League. In 176 career games with the Bulls, Tangradi recorded 67 goals, 101 assists and 168 points. He added 56 career postseason points on 23 goals and 33 assists in 52 playoff games.

Tangradi set career highs across the board last season in Belleville in goals (38), assists (50), points (88) and penalty minutes (61). He continued his strong play in the postseason where he totaled 21 points (8G-13A) in just 16 games.

The Philadelphia, PA native was acquired, along with forward Chris Kunitz, from Anaheim on Feb. 26, 2009 in exchange for defenseman Ryan Whitney. He was originally drafted by Anaheim in the second round (42nd overall) of the 2007 NHL Entry Draft.

As usual, here is Dave Molinari’s game recap from today’s Post Gazette. The boys are disappointed about not being able to secure the Division title, but they have switched their focus to the playoffs.

Pens Change Focus to the Playoffs

Alexei Ponikarovsky talked about the circumstances of his suspension and the hit on Josh Bailey that caused it Thursday evening.

Poni talks suspension

Joe Starkey, who is by far one of my favorite Pittsburgh writers, praises the Mellon Arena closing ceremony from Friday evening, but gives us another look…the anti-ceremony. This piece will bring you a laugh… some great stuff here.

Starley’s Anti-Ceremony

Rob Rossi gives us some Penguins awards that you just won’t find anywhere else…

The Rossi’s!

Kevin Gorman of the Tribune Review is the only mainstream writer that I have seen talk about Jagr’s absence from the ceremony on Thursday night. It was astounding that Jagr, who is arguably the second greatest Penguin to this point, wasn’t at the ceremony.

No Jagr? BOO

Steven Stamkos becomes the third youngest to 30 goals. Congratulations Stammer!

Stamkos third youngest to 30

The NHL will hold the 2011 draft in Minnesota.

Minnesota gets the NHL Draft in 2011

Tkachuk scratched from final NHL game. The Blues did have a ceremony honoring him in their final home game. I am assuming that “Walt” opted out of this game and wanted the home game to be his final NHL appearance.

Tkachuk scratched from final game

This piece breaks down the final day of the season and everything that is on the line. Scoring titles, goal scoring titles, playoff positioning etc will all be determined by this afternoon’s and this evening’s games.

Last Day of Season a Big one

Jerry Reinsdorf leads pack in bid to buy NHL’s Coyotes. Apparently the two bids that the league has on the table are close to equal, but many expect the league to go with Reinsdorf’s group.

Reinsdorf big leads the pack

Eddie Olczyk’s story gives hope to locals in Chicago…Olczyk’s story is a great one of personal triumph and local kid done good, as he grew up in Chicago, was drafted by and played for the Blackhawks.

Eddie O inspires many

Former Bruins first round draft pick Zach Hamill was recalled and made his debut this afternoon against the Washington Capitals. With their playoff position being secured, they decided to give him a look.

Zach Hamill anxious to show what he can do

Jim Matheson of the Edmonton Journal writes that historically centers are more successful coming out of the top spot in the NHL draft. Based on that finding, Matheson feels that the Oilers should select Tyler Seguin with their first overall pick, should they secure it in the lottery.

Oilers should take Seguin

A look at the career of Jarome Iginla from the Calgary Herald… they have timelined everything from his trade to the Flames and all his accomplishments.

Looking at Iginla

Shero interview on the way…