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Luongo sees potential 2-0 lead slip away

by Dave Lozo
CHICAGO -- Roberto Luongo's Game 2 was looking pretty similar to his outing Saturday in the series opener. He made save after save against the onslaught of the Chicago Blackhawks on Monday night at United Center, but this time it wouldn't be enough.

A 2-1 lead in the third period was erased when Chicago's Patrick Sharp scored a shorthanded goal off a 2-on-1 rush, and Kris Versteeg's goal following a scramble with 1:30 remaining in the game proved to be the winner in the Blackhawks' 4-2 win against the Vancouver Canucks.

The best-of-seven Western Conference Semifinal series is now tied at 1-1 when it looked like the Canucks were going to head back to Vancouver for Wednesday's Game 3 with a commanding 2-0 lead in the series. Mason Raymond and Mikael Samuelsson gave the Canucks a 2-0 lead 5:02 into the game, but the Blackhawks controlled just about every aspect of the contest for the final 50 minutes.

Luongo, who made 30 saves in a losing effort, spoke to the media after the game:

Q: Did it seem like the Blackhawks made good on their plan to crowd the crease a little bit more in Game 2?

Luongo: I think so. They got one of their goals off of that, maybe the first one.

Q: Did you find that you guys were sitting back after getting the 2-0 lead?

Luongo: It looked that way. We talked about it, that we have to keep going after it and they're a team that won't quit and has the talent to come back in games. We didn't want to sit back, we wanted to keep going at them and try to get some more goals. Unfortunately, we weren't able to.

Q: What are your thoughts on giving away the opportunity to take a big lead in the series when you were up 2-0 in the first period?

Luongo: We came out and had a great start, no doubt about it. In fact, the first 10 minutes we generated a lot of scoring chances. It could have easily been 4- or 5-0. But they answered right away with (Brent Seabrook's goal) and after that the game was pretty close the rest of the way. Unfortunately, they got a couple of breaks.

Q: It's disappointing to lose, but is it a consolation to get out of the first two games with a split on the road?

Luongo: No, it's not. We came here tonight to win a game, we didn't come here to split. You can't be satisfied. We had an opportunity to do something really good here tonight and unfortunately we fell a bit short. It's just a matter of making sure that in the next home game we make some adjustments and come ready to play.

Q: What happened on the winning goal? It appeared you were knocked down.

Luongo: I don't know what happened. I have to look at a replay. There were a bunch of guys around me so I'm not even exactly sure what exactly happened on the play.

Q: Did it become difficult to track the puck once that happened?

Luongo: Yeah, once it went to the point, I got up as quick as I could and got into position. I was able to get a glimpse when he fed it across, so I tried to get across and I did. He just pretty much made a perfect shot under the bar.

Follow Dave Lozo on Twitter: @DLozoNHL

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