VANCOUVER – The Vancouver Canucks were back on the ice at Rogers Arena on Wednesday afternoon trying to put behind them an embarrassing 7-2 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 4 at the United Center.
To a man, the Canucks were looking ahead to Thursday's Game 5 as Vancouver has a chance to close out its best-of-seven series on home ice.
"It was done when we got here today," said coach Alain Vigneault of putting Game 4 behind him.
Ryan Kesler, who was just one of five players to finish with an even rating in Tuesday night's loss, says the team is now looking ahead.
"We're excited to play on home ice, in front of our fans and put out a really good game," he said. "We're excited about this opportunity, we're in a good spot and we got to give them credit – they put their best game on the ice last game and we got to respond now."
A noticeable trend in the series has seen the Canucks go from physically out-hitting the Blackhawks (92-61) in the first two games of the series, which Vancouver won by a combined score of 6-3, to being out-hit in Tuesday's loss by a 44-33 margin.
"The hits are there when they're there," said Tanner Glass trying to explain the difference. "I think they're a product of when we're doing the right things on the ice.
"If we're putting (the puck) in good areas where defensemen are having to go back for it, we're making good angles in the neutral zone and giving us a chances at hits, that's when the hits are there."
Alexander Edler, Henrik Sedin and Roberto Luongo were all given day off Wednesday afternoon. Luongo appeared to be shaken up after making an awkward save late in the first period, but Vigneault assured the media he was fine.
"Just a day off for those guys," said Vigneault. "Everyone's 100 percent."
Alexander Burrows expects a bounce-back performance from his goaltender, who allowed six goals on 28 shots Tuesday night.
"He's like a warrior, he's a competitor … you know he's going to bounce back and play a solid game," Burrows said of Luongo. "Last night those were good shots, good clean looks that they had at him. We just have to make sure we play better in front of him and it's a team effort."
Wednesday afternoon was also an opportunity for Canucks defenseman Kevin Bieksa to respond to John Scott's comments in what has become a back-and-forth war of words through the media between the two defensemen.
After Game 4, Scott had this to say regarding Bryan Bickell walking around the Canucks' defenseman on the game's opening goal: "Bieksa … what a joke. I guess he needs to get the skating lessons, not me."
The Canucks' defenseman was surprised with the comments when asked for a response this afternoon.
"Really?" he said, grinning. "I was told when I was a rookie, and a guy that wasn't playing much, to not bother the regulars, so that's the advice he should take -- don't bother the regulars."