Penguins sticking with Vokoun in Game 2
Pittsburgh Penguins goaltenders Marc-Andre Fleury (left) and Tomas Vokoun trade places in net during practice in Pittsburgh, June 2, 2013. (REUTERS/Brian Snyder)
If there are calls for Tomas Vokoun’s head, the Pittsburgh Penguins goalie hasn’t heard them.
OK, not so much calls for his head, but more that some think the Penguins should turn to Marc-Andre Fleury for Game 2 of the Eastern Conference final Monday night against the Boston Bruins.
It’s not going to happen.
“I don’t pay attention much to what media is saying,” Vokoun said. “Never did. I haven’t heard it, those decisions are up to coaches and they will do what they think is best for the team.
“Dan (Bylsma) just said come play next game and that was it.”
There’s no good reason for the Penguins coach to insert Fleury, who has not played since Game 4 of the first round against the New York Islanders, which came on May 7.
Vokoun was not the reason the Penguins lost 3-0 to the Bruins in Game 1, and you would hope that the Penguins, with Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin leading the way, don’t require a boost that a goaltending change may or may not bring to get their heads back in the game.
“Coaches think about a lot of things, lineup, players, schemes,” Bylsma said. “I heard people talk about it on NHL Network, so it did cross my mind.”
Vokoun is the least of the Penguins’ worries. They have to concentrate more on getting in the way of Bruins goalie Tuukka Rask than they do on wondering what the referees are going to call.
“We have to bear down on our chances,” Pens forward Chris Kunitz said. “You’re not going to get many against a defensive team that gets close to their goalie and blocks shots and pokes pucks away.”
The Bruins have a good idea of what’s in store.
“I expect them to be better,” Boston coach Claude Julien said. “Any time you lose a game in your own building, and also being the team they are, they’re going to be better.
“And that’s why we need to be better, as well. We hit a few posts ourselves the last game. We’ve managed to score some goals. That was the difference.”