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Vokoun remains Penguins starter for Game 2

Monday, 06.03.2013 / 12:14 PM

By Chris Adamski - Correspondent / Penguins-Bruins series blog

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Vokoun remains Penguins starter for Game 2

PITTSBURGH -- Pittsburgh Penguins coach Dan Bylsma was asked if he had given any thought to making a goalie change heading into Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Final.

"I watch the NHL Network, so I've heard it talked about," Bylsma said. "So yes."

When pressed further on if he'd considered going back to erstwhile starter Marc-Andre Fleury after starting Tomas Vokoun for the previous eight games, Bylsma said, "I heard people talk about it on the NHL Network, so it did cross my mind."

Other than listening to commentators on television, though, not nearly enough to make a switch.

Vokoun said Bylsma gave him no indication he had lost his starting gig over the ensuing 36 hours after allowing three goals on 30 shots in a 3-0 loss to the Boston Bruins in Game 1 Saturday night.

"No, Dan just said, 'Come play the next game,'" Vokoun said. "And that was it."

The "next game" is 8 p.m. Monday at Consol Energy Center (8 p.m. ET, NBCSN, CBC, RDS). Vokoun was the first goaltender off the ice at the morning skate, and he confirmed to reporters that he will be the starter.

Vokoun has stellar numbers since taking over for Fleury starting with Game 5 of the conference quarterfinals against the New York Islanders. He's won six of eight starts with a 1.98 goals-against average and .937 save percentage.

The only game the Penguins had lost this postseason with Vokoun between the pipes before Saturday was a 2-1 double-overtime setback at the Ottawa Senators in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference Semifinals.

"You're not judging by a win or loss ... when it comes to judging your goaltenders," Bylsma said. "It's not always a 'W' or 'L' that dictates how a guy played in a game or what you go with."

Fleury had started every postseason game the franchise played since he was drafted with the No. 1 pick in the 2003 NHL Draft. He made 26 saves in a shutout in the playoff opener against the Islanders, tying Tom Barrasso for the franchise record for postseason shutouts.

But he allowed 14 goals over the next three games and at least four in each. Vokoun allowed a total of 14 goals in the seven games he played prior to Game 1 against he Bruins. He has not allowed more than three goals in a game.

Vokoun was asked if he's aware of any media reports calling for Fleury to regain his starting job.

"I haven't heard it, but those decisions are up to coaches," he said. "And they'll do what they think is best for the team. That's as far as I can comment on that."

Throughout the Penguins' dressing room, players have expressed support both for Fleury and Vokoun. Vokoun is fourth in playoffs goals-against average and third in save percentage. Fleury finished the regular season one victory short of the NHL lead in that category, posting a 2.39 GAA and .916 save percentage.

"Voky played well in Game 1, and that's not our decision, obviously," veteran forward Craig Adams said. "But whoever's in the net, we're going to be in good shape."

Quote of the Day

I was surprised. I knew I got it. It's tough. You never know how hard it is until it registers on the gun. I got pretty much all I could into and you just hope for the best.

— Nashville Predators defenseman Shea Weber after winning the AMP NHL Hardest Shot event at the 2015 Honda NHL All-Star Skills Competition