PLAYOFF RUN ENDS
It was as exciting as it was heartbreaking. The Canucks went down swinging last night in a wild Game #6 at the United Centre in Chicago.
Vancouver battled back from a 3-1 deficit and pulled ahead twice with one-goal leads, but ultimately the Blackhawks put the series out of reach late in the third, ending the Canucks season.
Post-game captain Roberto Luongo
, who had never let in more than six goals in a game in a Canucks sweater, shouldered the blame for the 7-5 loss to the Blackhawks.
"I think I let my teammates down tonight," said Luongo. "It's something that's going to take a while to get over."
"It was pretty wide open, but I have to make the saves. Obviously, you let in seven goals, you're not very satisfied with your own performance."
His teammates were quick to share the blame and disappointment in an early end to a postseason run that showed so much promise.
"He's been exceptional for us, everyone knows what he means to our hockey club," said Willie Mitchell. "We win, we lose, everything we do is because of the team. It wasn't one play or one moment. It was multiple things that added up to failure.
"We worked hard and we battled back, generated offence. But it just wasn't enough.”
The close-knit team bonded through adversity and found success that no one was predicting at the beginning of the season, clinching the Northwest Division. They did it as a team and last night in Chicago they lost as a team.
"You look at this team," said Daniel Sedin
. "We had a chance to go a long way. That's the disappointing thing. This series has been close but we kept coming up on the losing end."
"We didn't play any game in this series at our best," said Mattias Ohlund. "We didn't give them our best, for whatever reason. That's the most frustrating thing. What can I say? We felt we could do better. We have a great team here."
The Blackhawks move on to the Western Conference Finals to face off against the winner of the Detroit vs. Anaheim series. Head coach Alain Vigneault gave credit to the young, skilled Chicago team.
"We had opportunities to take control of the series and we couldn't do it," said Vigneault. "I think you have to give them credit. They're one of the best skilled teams in the NHL. If they can keep this team together in the cap era, the people of Chicago are going to have a great team to watch for a very long time."THE PLAYOFF SHOW:
Jeff Paterson with guest, Matt Sekeres of the Globe and Mail review game six, the best of the post-season, as well as take fan questions. Send in your questions and watch to see if they get answered. Watch today at 3pm. More