“They got a couple of fortunate bounces and then, all of a sudden, the floodgates open and maybe they get a little bit of confidence,” Luongo said.
He allowed three more goals in the last 2 1/2 minutes of the game, but there was plenty of blame to go around _ and a lot of faith that Luongo would bounce right back.
“He’s done it all year, so that’s not a problem,” NHL scoring champion Daniel Sedin said. “You can’t really say it was his fault. I think, as a team, we didn’t help him out. They scored (two goals) on the power play and (two) on our power play, which should not happen.”
Luongo doesn’t have to go very far back to remember the last time he struggled.
Vancouver won the first three games of the opening round against Chicago. One more win and the Canucks would be on to the next round. But they lost the next two, with Luongo being pulled from both of them. Cory Schneider started Game 6 before cramps forced him to the bench and brought in Luongo.
Vancouver lost that game but won the seventh _ behind Luongo.
Now he has just one day off to recover.
“This is the Stanley Cup finals,” Luongo said. “I’ve waited my whole life to be here. I’m not going to put my head down. It’s time to get back to work. Obviously, (Monday) night was disappointing for all of us, but we’ve got a great opportunity here.”
Now that the teams have faced each other three times in six days, they might have a better idea about how to beat the opposing goalie. But it’s not that easy, especially when they’re so talented.
“It’s not like there’s some special book that’s floating around on how to beat them,” Ference said. “It’s really just about being consistent with throwing pucks at the net. Playoff goals, you always hear about the greasy ones and traffic in front of the net and rebounds.
“It’s no secret. Every team would probably say the exact same comments about our goalie. Because they’re good goalies, that’s the only way you beat them. You don’t get them on clean shots from the outside.”
Not very often anyway, even after a horrible game like the one Luongo must bounce back from.
“This is part of goaltending and you have to have a short memory. You can’t dwell on what happened,” he said. “It might even be easier to bounce back from a game like (Monday) night realizing that we didn’t have our best game and we just need to bring it.”