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Does Vokoun signing force Leafs to look at Luongo?

Jun 4, 2012, 12:54 PM EDT

Los Angeles Kings v Vancouver Canucks Getty Images

Now that Tomas Vokoun has signed with the Penguins, the Toronto Maple Leafs have one fewer goaltender to target this offseason.

So, what are the remaining options?

Pending unrestricted free agents include Scott Clemmensen, Josh Harding, and Martin Biron. All three could feasibly get the job done, but if you’re Leafs GM Brian Burke and you know you have to make the playoffs, would your stake your job on either of those three?

Which brings us to Roberto Luongo, if he indeed wants to leave Vancouver. Say what you will about the 33-year-old with the contract that lasts forever, but he’s started at least 54 games per season since 2000-01. As a regular starter in the NHL, his worst year statistically was 2009-10 when he won 40 games with a .913 save percentage and had four shutouts.

If you’re Burke, what do you do? Because we’re struggling to think of another practical option, unless you can convince the Canucks to trade Cory Schneider instead of Luongo. Of course, if the Canucks are willing to trade Schneider, the Leafs won’t be the only suitors. Columbus and Tampa Bay would be willing to pay, and pay big.

Any ideas for Burke? Share ‘em in the comments section.

Update: I’ll add another candidate — Tim Thomas? Obviously Burke would have to convince him to play, but if the Leafs are still committed to James Reimer in the long run, adding an elite goalie with one year left on his contract wouldn’t be such a bad option.

Oh, and if Thomas wants to play for Team USA in 2014, getting on Burke’s good side wouldn’t be a bad idea.

  1. atb4 - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:02 PM

    Sign Dominik Hasek and start him in every game

  2. psujay - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:07 PM

    Do you mean about this situation, or in general? Because there are plenty of things we’d like to tell Burke to do. Could someone please give him directions to hell?

    • govtminion - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:10 PM

      Until the Leafs finally fire him, he’s already in hell.

  3. bcisleman - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:09 PM

    If we take Mike Gillis at his word, Luongo has simply said that he is willing to waive his NTC if the Nucks want to move him. My GUESS is that Luongo wants the Nucks to trade either him or Schneider. If I’m Gillis, I try to package Schneider to get Rick Nash.

    For Burke, its a matter of whether he believes in Reimer or not. If he does, signing someone like Clemmensen as a veteran backup makes the most sense. Trading for Luongo should be the last resort.

  4. Nowhere Man - Jun 4, 2012 at 1:19 PM

    There is no way that Gillis is going after Nash. 7.8 million for a 30 goal scorer with nothing else to his name when you’re paying two art ross, hart and pearson winners 6 is a bad, bad idea.

    • daerian - Jun 4, 2012 at 2:10 PM

      Sure, because Nash hasn’t won any individual awards in the NHL. Oh, wait. Rocket Richard is a pretty nice trophy. Especially when you win it on a team with zero help. Nash would be in the top 10 goal scorers on a team with help. If the Nucks pick him up, they’ll not regret it.

    • bcisleman - Jun 4, 2012 at 8:02 PM

      A 30 goal scorer on a team that lacked Ross & Hart trophy winners. Put him on the Nucks and watch his stats explode.

  5. hockelord - Jun 4, 2012 at 2:07 PM

    Brian Burke should be fired!
    I live in Toronto and have been watching this guy do nothing. Burke said he doesn’t want to make the playoffs as an 8th place team and get knocked out in the first round. anyone see how the kings are doing?..note to Burke… you haven’t even made the playoffs…and james reimer isn’t the Real Deal pal. when he won the cup with the ducks the pieces were already put there for him. this guy is the most over rated GM in the NHL. the leafs are going no where.

  6. dbarnes79 - Jun 4, 2012 at 2:16 PM

    Louongo is not the answer for the Leafs. Bad contract along with the fact Louongo is inconsistent on a very good Canucks team. Leafs need to add a Biron or Harding type and get help up front. Forget Burke’s job the Leafs cannot take on more terrible contracts.

  7. pflore2 - Jun 4, 2012 at 2:26 PM

    Leafs should go after young goalie who is stuck behind quality starter. Most obvious is Bernier from the Kings … they have Quick and so Bernier, who is/was a quality prospect, should be available without the massive price tag of Luongo.

  8. drewsylvania - Jun 4, 2012 at 3:03 PM

    I’d love to see the Leafs give up a bunch of good players for Luongo. It’d be great fun to watch him choke against the B’s repeatedly.

  9. davego6 - Jun 4, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    I’ve said before and I’ll say it again. The Leafs will be fine with Reimer and Ben Scrivens. The last thing they need is an overpaid goalie like Loungo. And don’t even consider Thomas, he’s trouble with a capital T.

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