As the Pittsburgh Penguins await their first-round series with the Columbus Blue Jackets to begin Wednesday, they have added a familiar face to the roster. (View the full series schedule, including TV info, here.)
The Penguins have recalled goaltender Tomas Vokoun from his conditioning assignment with Wilkes-Barre/Scranton of the American Hockey League (AHL), it was announced Monday by general manager Ray Shero.
Vokoun, who has missed all season after having emergency surgery to dissolve a blood clot in late September, appeared in two games for WBS over the weekend, going 1-1. He allowed five goals on 46 shots.
It’s unclear what Vokoun’s role will be in the playoffs. He could serve as a No. 3 goalie behind Marc-Andre Fleury and Jeff Zatkoff, or Penguins coach Dan Bylsma could elect to turn to Vokoun as the No. 2 netminder if Fleury struggles.
Given the fact that Vokoun has played in only a pair of minor-league games all year, the latter doesn’t seem that realistic unless Bylsma finds himself in a real bind.
Vokoun was especially solid in the postseason a year ago, when he took over for the struggling Fleury and posted a 13-4 record in his 17 starts with a 2.45 goals against average and a .919 save percentage.
I wouldn’t expect to see much of Vokoun, but the move at least gives Bylsma an additional option to turn to if needed.