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updated: 4/13/2011 9:04 PM

How long will Hawks-Canucks respect last?

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  • Although both teams speak respectfully of each other, Vancouver's Kevin Bieksa, left, understands the emotion their rivalry with the Blackhawks creates and said before Wednesday's game he hates the sight of a Hawks jersey.

      Although both teams speak respectfully of each other, Vancouver's Kevin Bieksa, left, understands the emotion their rivalry with the Blackhawks creates and said before Wednesday's game he hates the sight of a Hawks jersey.
    Associated Press/The Canadian Press/2009 file

 
 

VANCOUVER, British Columbia -- Where are Adam Burish and Shane O'Brien when you need them?

The Blackhawks and Canucks opened their first-round Western Conference playoff series here Wednesday night going on and on about how they respected each other.

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Maybe things will change once the series gets going and these two rivals rediscover their dislike for one another.

At least let's hope they do.

For the last two springs when the Hawks and Canucks met in the second round, we could count on Burish and O'Brien hurling insults at each other -- but O'Brien is now in Nashville while Burish is a few days into his off-season in Dallas.

As far as the fans in Vancouver are concerned, the Hawks' biggest villains are gone. That would be Dustin Byfuglien, Andrew Ladd and Burish. Perhaps some new bad guys will emerge for the Hawks.

The Canucks still have many of the same players Hawks fans have grown to dislike over the past three seasons such as Ryan Kesler, Alex Burrows, Kevin Bieksa and Roberto Luongo.

Thank goodness for Bieksa for saying what he did about the Blackhawks before the series started.

"When you put that (Hawks) jersey on instant hate comes into this dressing room," Bieksa said. "It's a team that we want to beat badly."

That's more like it.

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