While everyone in the NHL world was busy trying to find their jaws on the floor after Shea Weber was signed to a huge offer sheet by the Philadelphia Flyers which was then matched by the Nashville Predators, things remained quiet in Canuck Land where a Luongo trade is ready to happen, or is it? The Canucks made their big FA splash signing hometown boy Jason Garrison and re-signing Cory Schneider. But yes, everyone is still making rumors about where Luongo could end up. Yes Luongo will be traded, as both he and management have made it clear that it’s time to move on from this tea party. With the signing of Cory Schneider, you don’t think they can have both on the roster, at the same time? That would be crazy…..wouldn’t it?
While everyone and their dog agrees that the Canucks should move Luongo, there have not been many takers beating down the Canucks door this off season or else wouldn’t this trade be done already? The likely candidate of winning the Luongo sweepstakes is the Florida Panthers. He likes Florida, he lives there, he’s got family there, and the Panthers could be a Roberto Luongo away from making a more serious playoff run. So why hasn’t it happened you ask?
Mike Gillis is most likely asking for the Arena and a popcorn stand also. Just kidding. But seriously, he’s most likely asking for either Jonathan Huberdeau or Erik Gudbranson who are top rookies for the Panthers which the panthers aren’t ready to part ways with yet. Or maybe Dale Tallon has also realized that Jacob Markstrom could be the Roberto Luongo they need.
Outside of the Panthers, there have been indications that Toronto may or may not want Luongo. The Leafs are also in on Jonathan Bernier from LA, which could be why they are holding back on Luongo. But as the season gets closer (if there is a season), the Canucks could open training camp with Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider. That Spells World War III.
There is potential for failure and success with having two highly skilled and highly paid goalies on your roster. Will Luongo be supportive riding the pine for most of the season? Or will he turn into a sour grapes and asked to be traded so the Canucks virtually will get nothing but draft picks and a minor league player for him. Luongo knows that the team has chosen Cory Schneider to be the number one goalie, and it was made clear during the playoffs when they gave him the reins in net for the last two playoff games last season. Don’t forget Luongo and Schneider has been all class throughout this situation as it unfolds in Vancouver.
Luongo and Schneider both understand this is a business, and things happen. Luongo understands that just because he hasn’t been traded before camp, doesn’t mean he’s going to be traded during the season. Nor does this mean he will be stuck on the bench like Schneider was last season and get the rare Tuesday night start against Columbus. Roberto Luongo and Cory Schneider have proved for the last two seasons they are the best goalie tandem in the league, so why rush this? Why rush Luongo out of Vancouver when this could work, if both players stay mature about this? Gillis and the Canucks management have no need to panic, keep working the phones; you will find the right deal. They’re still in a great position to move Luongo and improve their team, but just don’t be shocked if it doesn’t happen by training camp.