The NHL credited Tomas Vokoun with 66 saves in the Penguins' first-round playoff series against the New York Islanders.
It missed one.
Because while Vokoun was rejecting point-blank backhanders and uncontested shots from around the hash marks, he also was saving the Penguins' season.
Sure, it's possible that Marc-Andre Fleury, who Vokoun replaced for Games 5 and 6, could have matched what Vokoun did. Maybe even exceeded it, because a goalie with his skills set and a Stanley Cup ring is capable of fantastic things.
Still, Fleury was way off his game much of the time after posting a shutout in Game 1, and when the Islanders evened the series, 2-2, coach Dan Bylsma had little choice but to call on Vokoun.
What mattered most for the Penguins -- and what had the greatest impact on how the series played out -- was that Bylsma was able to call on an accomplished and reliable veteran, not a 22-year-old whose only playoff experience came from watching television or a 43-year-old who stopped at the end of the bench on his way out to pasture.
Vokoun embodied the exceptional depth that was such an asset for the Penguins in Round 1, and which should serve them well in their second-round series against Ottawa. And anything that might follow.
It allowed Bylsma to sit Tyler Kennedy for the first four games, then insert him in time to score the game-winner in Game 5 and to set up Brooks Orpik's overtime series-winner Saturday night at Nassau Coliseum in Uniondale, N.Y.
It allowed Bylsma to keep Joe Vitale in street clothes for Games 1-4, then add him to the personnel mix for Game 5, when he won 9 of 10 faceoffs, and Game 6, when his pass allowed Pascal Dupuis to score the Penguins' second goal.
The Penguins used 25 players against the Islanders, and just about all of them made a tangible contribution toward making their matchup with the Senators possible.
That the Penguins have a deep reservoir of talent and experience from which to summon replacements for players who are injured or struggling is no surprise or fortunate coincidence; it is why general manager Ray Shero moved so aggressively to reinforce his roster in the days leading up to the NHL trade deadline.
What was not foreseen, however, was the way the Penguins dominated special-teams play against New York.
Perhaps it wasn't a shock that their power play scored on 7 of 21 chances for a league-best conversion rate of 33.3 percent, since its No. 1 unit could pass for the starting lineup in an all-star game.
But their penalty-killers, who had a lackluster regular season, were virtually flawless in Round 1, limiting a volatile New York power play to two goals in 20 tries and routinely thwarting the Islanders at times when a goal could have been game-changing.
Replicating that success against the Senators won't be easy.
Ottawa scored on 6 of 25 power plays, a success rate of 24 percent, in its opening-round series victory against Montreal. Even with all-star center Jason Spezza still recovering from back surgery, coach Paul MacLean can send out Erik Karlsson, Daniel Alfredsson, Sergei Gonchar and Milan Michalek, for starters, when his club gets a man-advantage.
Limiting Ottawa's opportunities with the extra man will be part of the Penguins' challenge, which means eliminating the kind of pointless penalties they took at times in Round 1.
Witness the second period of Game 6 when, in a span of less than 12 minutes, Brenden Morrow and Matt Cooke picked up minors in the offensive zone and the Penguins were caught with too many men on the ice.
Bylsma surely liked what he saw from his penalty-killers against the Islanders, but presumably hopes he doesn't see them quite so often in Round 2.
The lapses in discipline and focus that contributed to some of the unnecessary and retaliatory penalties the Penguins took in Round 1 showed up in other facets of their game, too.
They turned the puck over in the defensive and neutral zones with alarming regularity at times, as ill-considered passes that led directly to more than a few New York scoring chances. And, sometimes, goals.
Still, the Penguins' talent and experience -- and yes, depth -- allowed them to overcome all of the errors, unforced and otherwise, they made in the Islanders series.
Those assets might even allow them to survive Round 2 if they repeat their mistakes.
That's not a theory they should be eager to test, though.
Dave Molinari: Dmolinari@Post-Gazette.com or Twitter @MolinariPG. First Published May 13, 2013 4:00 AM