In light of Tuesday night’s embarrassing 7-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks, I think most fans, myself included, expected a much better effort from the Canucks.
Boy, were we wrong.
For a team who didn’t serve up a lot of stinkers in the regular season, the Canucks have now failed to show in two consecutive playoff games. What once seemed like an indomitable 3-game series lead is down to a single game. The swagger the Canucks had at the start of the series has been replaced with stunned disbelief. Momentum is clearly on the Blackhawks’ side now with the series shifting back to the Madhouse on Madison for game 6 on Sunday.
Duncan Keith. Scored 2 goals and added 2 assists. Since losing defensive partner, Brent Seabrook, to a concussion, the former Penticton Panther has emerged as the Blackhawks’ emotional leader.
Roberto Luongo. It’s hard to pin blame on one person in a 5-0 loss, but Luongo, who was named a finalist for the Vezina Trophy this morning, has to be better. After playing lights out hockey for the first 10 periods of this series, he’s let in 9 of the last 24 shots he’s faced.
- 0.943. Roberto Luongo’s series save percentage before Brian Campbell and Keith beat him in a 17-second span in game 4.
- 0.625. Roberto Luongo’s series save percentage since Campbell’s goal.
- 20. Ryan Kesler’s 20 shots in the playoffs so far is the second-most in the NHL – only Keith (22) has more. But of course, Kes has yet to beat Corey Crawford in 5 games.
The Next Time
If you go by the media and online chatter, a lot of people have already conceded game 6 to the Hawks. The popular belief was that the Canucks needed to win game 5 or it was almost a certainty that game 7 would be required. For what it’s worth, the Canucks lost 3 games in a row just twice in the regular season.