Draft weekend has come and gone and as expected Roberto Luongo is still a Canuck. Canucks fans were waiting with baited breath for the Luongo to the Leafs announcement. That announcement never came and with today’s reports it may never occur. The link takes you to a story that states Luongo has so far refused to waive his no trade clause to go to Toronto or Chicago and will only waive it if he gets shipped to Florida. Could this story really be true? If this is true it is utter douche-baggery on Luongo’s part. If the fans of Vancouver despised the goalie before, how would they feel now? Yikes…however, one has to take a report like this with a grain of salt.
For all we know this demand of a trade to Florida may have come from Lu’s agent in a bargaining ploy to get his client’s first wish. Lu may be open to being traded to multiple places, but why not try something gangster like this to see if you can get what you want…to be traded to where your home and family is. If it doesn’t work, which I don’t think it will, then we’ll see another story where Lu has had a miraculous change of heart and is now reluctantly open to going elsewhere. The Florida Panthers are too financially frugal in my opinion to take on Lu’s pricey and lengthy contract. This was the same team who was picking up the likes of Brian Campbell just so they could reach the salary cap floor.
For me it still looks like Toronto is the lead candidate to acquire Lu. There just aren’t many teams in need of a number one goalie and there are fewer still willing/able to take on Lu’s contract. As I’ve stated before, the Leafs and the Canucks are both desperate. One team desperate to make the playoffs and the other desperate to rid themselves of a venomous distraction. It’s a pissing match right now between Burke and Gillis, both of them puffing out their chests trying to not show weakness. In an ideal world, Gillis would benefit from rumours of a 2nd team desperate to land Luongo…offering a package that bests anything Toronto may have already offered. However, this 2nd team seems nowhere to be found so we’ll all just have to wait. My prediction is something will get done and I’m picking the week of July 9 for the trade to go down. If it doesn’t happen by then…it may never happen.