Two years into his 12-year, 64 million dollar extension, Roberto Luongo found himself on the pine behind Corey Schneider during the Canucks’ last three playoff games. This is a dilly of a pickle for Vancouver.

The headline says it all, really, but I’ll let Elliotte Friedman (a source far more credible than I) drop the news on you:

See? Told you.

While the “if asked” part is worth something…

…the statement isn’t meaningless. Plenty of guys would’ve dug their heels in and said “Nope, I’m a Vancouver Canuck for life.”

Here’s a few more relevant quotes from other credible people I follow before I weigh in:

Well then.

At first glance, the comment sounds like it carries a deeper message. It almost sounds like he wants to get the eff out of Dodge, given that he didn’t give the political “I want to win here” style answer. But I don’t think that’s necessarily the case.

My guess:

I think Roberto Luongo has just given up trying to be the Mr. Perfect everyone wants him to be in Vancouver. His contract turned him into a villian (apparently), and it feels like he’s given up trying to please everyone. He’s just seems to be rolling with the punches lately.

You want me to sit on the bench during some tough games? Fine. You want me to play back-up during the playoffs? Kay. You want me to start? Happily. WHATEVER.

The fans have booed him, the media has worked him, and it’s like he’s become an exasperated mother of four boys just existing, facing whatever comes next head-on. Oh look, grape juice on the carpet. He just seems beaten down and tired of fighting.

Yes, I would waive my no-trade clause if asked, because if I’m asked, I’m already traded. I think all he proved is that he’s not completely naive.

He recognizes that Corey Schneider can’t do this…

…on the bench forever with his level of talent, so something’s gotta give. (That video is awesome.)

Roberto Luongo seems like a pretty good guy. I think he said he’ll waive his NTC if asked because he’s had enough and isn’t going to make himself crazy over things he can’t control anymore. If a trade is another fork in his road, he’ll pick a direction and walk.

I wouldn’t read too much into it just yet.

And hell:

He made some great points.

Comments (27)

  1. Luongo for Parise.

    Make it happen, Lou.

    (Shush, I’m going to keep dreaming)

  2. send him to the Leafs WE NEED A GOALIE!!!!!

  3. I honestly think Lu said this more because he is sick of being a scapegoat to the vancouver media. He gets crucified even in 1 – 0 losses when it should be more the offence seeing flak for not being able to score beyond the Hank ‘n Dank connection here. theres been no consistent scoring (pls note hodgson and higgings with their bursts was good timing)

  4. Luongo for DiPietro :)

    • SOLD.

    • HaHa, for a second there, I thought you were serious!! Wow, its been a long day. Tampa needs a goalie, and Lui loves FLA….. Obviously, Stamkos is going nowhere, but maybe Lecavalier or Hedman. Too bad the Leafs don’t have anything worth taking, maybe Kessel or Schenn, But If I were MG I would ask for both and give them a couple of picks and that useless bag of crap Mason Raymond to make BB feel better,. At least leafsnation wouldn’t be able to say Burkie didn’t do everything possible to get a goalie. Luongo could get them to the playoffs for sure. Although, he would kind of need Kessel to get the goals, so…..Oh well.

      • No way Vinny is coming to Vancouver, he’s overpaid and he plays a position that is not available to anyone not named Ryan or Henrik.

  5. As a Canucks fan I find the whole thing kind of annoying. I know there are surely a lot of people in Vancouver who happily and aggressively vilify him any time something goes wrong, but to be honest, I haven’t met these people. I’ve lived in Vancouver since before Luongo got here, and the only complaints I’ve heard about him from the Nucks fans I talk to is that when he’s having a bad game, he tends to have an awful game. But we know he’s outstanding, we know he’s a good deal at $5.3, we know he won a gold medal, we know we got to game 7 of the SCF because he played great, and we know we’re lucky to have him. HOWEVER, if you were to judge the situation based on how it gets covered in the media, you’d think that Luongo can’t walk down the street without getting harrassed, that everyone in Vancouver hates the guy, and that he lives in a constant state of shame and anxiety. I’m not going to pretend I know every Canuck fan in the city, and I’m not going to pretend there aren’t people out there who love to scapegoat him. However, I do want to say that in my own personal experience talking to Canucks fans that actually follow the team and know a little bit about hockey, it seems that people like him just fine. I honestly believe that a huge amount of the Luongo controversy that springs up 2-3 times per year is largely the result of people in the sports media writing articles that they know people will read. They encourage bandwagon fans to finger him as the cause of a problem that they actually know very little about, just like the media shitting on Big Joe a couple times a year or wondering if maybe the Habs would go from last to first if they’d kept Halak. The smart money ignores that stuff. Just my two cents.

    • I tend to agree with this. I live in Victoria and there’s the odd Luongo-hater, but they tend to be bandwagoners anyway, so easily discounted. I blame the main stream media wholeheartedly, from HNIC (not so much Sportsnet except Spector or TSN), on down to all of the major papers in Canada. Particularly the rags that everyone seems to read and no one has any idea what idiots write the crap that they’re reading. Garrioch? Really? The Vancouver press has some real gloom and doom winners and the wise fan stays way away from reading this stuff, and sticks to sensible blogs except Puck Daddy. So too are to blame the internets — the fact that every moron now has an anonymous voice. I’ve seen the exact same comment by an infamous Vancouver poster posted on 17 sites. the exact same post. Anti-Luongo. Oh well, it will be exciting to see what happens. Gillis is no dummy. Somethin fun will happen.

      I feel really sorry for Luongo though, as much as I can feel sorry for someone with that much money. He was unfairly vilified in Vancouver. He holds some of the top stats in tne NHL for active goalies — the top. He’s in the top 5 in every stat. Not for the year, but for active goalies over a 250 game span or something like that. But listening to the MSM and the Canucks CDC (don’t EVER go there) you would think he was as bad as Hrudey or Garrett.

  6. I will just say this, If Vancouver chooses to trade lou they will only get something really good in return to make there team better. If they keep lou they lose Cory Shneider and get nothing in return. So if they need more scoring trade lou for a proven forward, you still got a great goalie in #35

    • This is an excellent point that has been quickly lost in the feeding frenzy. They could qualify Schneider and gamble that somebody will give him an offer sheet (which would get them a handful of high picks) but teams might wait them out and try to snatch him later as a UFA.

  7. Who is the most desperate clubs that need a goalie?…Toronto, Islanders, Tampa Bay, Columbus (Just thinking out loud..sort of). Who would be more willing to take on his contract? All that comes to mind is Toronto…

    • No way Burke is taking on a 10 year deal for a 33 year old goalie. He may be a jerk, but he’s not stupid.

      • he’s not stupid but he is desperate. If the Leafs don’t make the playoffs next year, Burkie will be out of a job.

    • Was reading someplace else, and Florida was suggested. Supposedly, the floor will be going up next year, and they’ll need somebody to fill the space.

  8. There is always Phillie they would jump at the chance to get Lu

  9. Lots of teams would kill for Lou.

  10. Guys, Toronto will not take Luongo’s contract. It just will not happen. I’m glad that they won’t because I don’t want a 33 year old goalie who is under contract for another 10 years. I would rather see us cut a deal with St. Louis for Halak.

  11. i moved to vancouver about 10 years ago, i have never been a canuck fan, i actually told many canuck fans that they were going to lose the first round by either a sweep or 5 games. i told the same people last year, “yeah they’ll make the playoffs, but they wont win it and that it will go to 7 games” hell i even said there was going to be a riot!
    Luongo was one of my favourite goalies when he was with florida, had a losing record but faced way too many shots per game….
    and its true, when he has a bad game, it really is bad….. the team backed him up a lot in the playoffs last year…. he was on his back more than in position.
    im a leaf fan, so what, i stand by my team thru good and bad and im not going to be a canuck fan because they make the playoffs.
    I don’t hate the canucks, heck, i even take my son to see them once in a while…. and by the way, he was cheering for LA!
    If toronto would grab luongo, that would be nice, but it wont happen, maybe a trade luongo/price?

  12. So he’ll go to a team that needs a goalie, of course assuming he gets traded at all. As BBB mentioned, some of the desperate teams include Toronto, TB, Columbus and Nyi (though I don’t feel Nyi would go for anything like it, not with DiPietro still on the books).

    Tampa is a good thought. They have forward assets they can maybe trade for a goalie – perhaps Lecavalier for Luongo, with a few additions one way or another to balance things?

    I’m not sure Toronto could do it. They’re pretty close to the cap for next year (under 8 mil away with only 17 nhl players under contract) and I’m not really sure they have the assets.

    Columbus probably does not have assets, other than their pick and Nash…not sure if Luongo is what they’d want to get for Nash, but one thought I’d had was something like:
    -Luongo + Kesler for Nash + Mason
    cap space ends up similar, but not sure if either team would go for it.

    The dark horse, in my opinion, is New Jersey. If Brodeur retires (and he’s definitely not looking like the Brodeur of old) they will need a new starter. The cap hit is basically the same, there would be a lot less external attention on Luongo, and I really feel like the Devils would be a good fit on the ice as well.
    They’re not the trap team of old, but they were 3rd in the east (9th overall) in goals against – despite Brodeur’s .908 saves percentage (Hedberg had a .918, though in only 27 games).

    • You do understand, of course, that Vancouver will get nothing in return for Luongo. The only possibility is that they take a large, unmovable contract for him. There will be no first round picks, or hot prospects.

      I repeat, you are delusional if you think that an assets are required for Luongo. All is needed is the desire to take on that contract.

      • I doubt that. Luongo is a proven all-star goalie. Sure, it’s a long contract and a big one, but 5.333 isn’t that high.

        I think you are delusional if you think Vancouver will just throw Luongo away. Why would they bother? They can give Schneider 2.5mil or so and hang on to Luongo if they don’t get any offers that meet their valuation, they do have some cap space.

        They may not get a major haul, but they will get something that makes the deal worth it for them. A 1st rounder or proven 2nd line player at least.
        Cap reasons are why I say Lecavalier as one option, or the idea of Nash+Mason for Kesler+Luongo. All three of Lecavalier, Nash and Mason are overpaid, but all three of them can contribute (Mason as a backup might not be a bad idea, since it means Schneider wouldn’t be thrown into a situation where he goes from playing 36 NHL games this year to ~70 next year).

        • I can personally give you my GUARANTEE that the Canucks will NOT get a 1st round pick for Luongo. If I knew you personally, I would be willing to lay $100 on it. I’m not saying that he’s not a great goalie. He has proven his abilities, but you might get, at maximum, 4 good years out him for 24 million, and then you have to pay him for another 6? And trying to unload that contract at that point would be absolutely impossible.

          • Maximum 4 good years? He’s only just turned 33, while guys like Brodeur, Thomas and Hasek are or were going strong in their late 30s. Brodeur will soon be 40, Thomas just turned 38, while Hasek kept going and was playing in the KHL last year – aged 46. Ed Belfour had a decent season in 06-07, aged 42, and then played an extra year in Sweden.

            But please tell me why Lecavalier for Luongo couldn’t work? Lecavalier is signed for more money, but is one year younger and has 2 less years on the deal.

            Then please tell me that Tampa would not be able to get a 1st rounder for Lecavalier. Imagine someone like Terry Pegula buys a team near the cap floor, say NYI? They happen to have some teams 20th to 25th overall pick from a previous trade, but the new owner wants to immediately make the team better and he’s got money to throw at the problem. So they call up Tampa, offer 20th-25th for Lecavalier. Maybe a couple extra pieces on either side. Good? I don’t see why not.

            But perhaps what this team needs is a goaltender. The owner, having the money, is willing to sacrifice a draft pick in order to have a star goalie who can lead your team towards the cup. Why not give up 20th to 25th for Luongo?

            And here’s another thing. Luongo let in some bad goals, sure, but he wasn’t the only problem with Vancouver. They only scored 3 goals in the 4 games they lost, which is certainly not Luongo’s fault. In the games they won he had a .978 saves percentage. So they won 3 games because of him, not because of the offense (all 3 were 1 goal games). So maybe he deserves the blame for losing 4, but put in Schneider and maybe they lose in 5 instead of 7.

            I think you are GREATLY undervaluing Luongo, as has most of the media. If he goes to a small market US team he will be fine. If I’m New Jersey, and Brodeur is retiring, I’d definitely be willing to part with a 1st (likely to be around 22nd, depending on playoff results) to grab him.

            Don’t forget that Luongo can retire any time in that deal and the team will be off the hook for the cap space. At least under the current CBA rules.

          • “I repeat, you are delusional if you think that an assets are required for Luongo. All is needed is the desire to take on that contract.”

            Right, since available all-star goalies signed long-term for less than 5.5 million are so plentiful these days….? I agree that his price might be lowered by the length of his contract, but come on Mike….

            “You do understand, of course, that Vancouver will get nothing in return for Luongo. ”

            Come on….

    • I can tell you that the Isles have probably zero interest in Roberto Luongo. Their biggest need is defense; their second is a reliable second-line goal scorer. They would be far more interested in Alex Edler than Bobby Lu.

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