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Hawks focused on knocking Luongo off his game

Image (1) Luongo1-thumb-250x166-10800.jpg for post 1407

With the Canucks taking on the Blackhawks for the second year in a row in the playoffs, everyone became excited about the prospect of seeing some more fireworks between the two teams after what went on last year. These are two teams that are close to forming one of the more abrasive rivalries in hockey, and at the nucleus of their hatred is the constant battle between Roberto Luongo and anyone who comes close to the Vancouver crease.

After Game 1, perhaps the Hawks should worry less about how they’re ticking off Luongo and focus more on stopping the Vancouver offense. Of course, that doesn’t seem to be their plan. Talking with, Chicago forward Adam Burish makes it sound as if the Hawks will be trying even harder to get Luongo off his game.

“Maybe it’s running him sometimes,” said Burish. “Maybe it’s spraying snow in his face.”

“I think he was kind of in a zone,” Burish said of Luongo’s 36-save performance in Game 1. “He made a couple early saves and he got in that groove. But that’s the kind of guy he is. He gets in these grooves and he gets feeling good and he’s awfully tough to beat. Sometimes you have to find a way to get to him. You have to find a way to rattle him ... You got to try to find a way to get him out of that rhythm.”

Luongo refused to the comments, obviously content to let his performance speak for itself. While it’s certainly true that the Hawks need to do whatever it takes to try and knock Luongo out of his comfort level in net, I didn’t exactly walk away from Game 1 thinking that if only the Hawks had run into Luongo a few more times they really might have had a better chance.