Skip to content

Gillis hints at potential deal for Luongo

Jan 22, 2013, 10:46 AM EDT

Roberto Luongo Getty Images

Canucks GM Mike Gillis claims nothing has changed with regards to his plans to trade goalie Roberto Luongo.

Even though Cory Schneider was pulled partway through Vancouver’s season-opener on Saturday after allowing five Anaheim goals, Gillis isn’t going to make a knee-jerk reaction.

So what’s going to happen?

At this point, not even Gillis knows. But he did on Monday give the Vancouver Sun a tasty tidbit for fans and media to speculate about.

“We have a potential deal in place with one team that has to do something with another player that they have — and it’s not who anybody thinks it is — and so we have to wait,” he said.

One thing Gillis isn’t amenable to is taking on dead salary – “a player who can’t play in our lineup” – in return for Luongo.

“We’ve had lots of proposals like that with good pieces that can help us but the other part doesn’t help us, and oftentimes they have term attached to them, so we’d just be turning around and buying out a guy,” he said.

“I’d rather keep the guy we know, who’s a good person.”

Related: Gillis won’t “succumb” to media pressure to trade Luongo

  1. ibieiniid - Jan 22, 2013 at 10:55 AM

    why even say anything if you’re going to be that cryptic? just shut up and let us know if you trade him.

    • freneticgarfieldfan - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:19 AM

      He just tries to keep the story warm – cheap marketing

      • kitshky - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:37 PM

        Or … he gets asked about it numerous times a day in a rabid, hockey obsessed market, and his numerous replies are reported as newsworthy because it’s one of the few hockey stories that grabs the attention of the hockey fan base in general and therefore is going to attract wide spread interest throughout NHL markets.

        Or what you said.

  2. billsin20xx - Jan 22, 2013 at 10:56 AM

    Wonder if he would like to re-think his Hodgson trade!!! LOL, he’s centering the hottest line in the league right now (but they have only played 2 games).

    • porkcrisp - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:07 AM

      Did you see Kassian destroy Eager in the fight Sunday night, plus he scored. Power forwards usually take a few years more to develop, but when they do they are a lot more valuable then third line centres (which Cody was in Vancouver). Plus he’s younger than Hodgson.

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:32 AM

        hmm… What did the last two (At least) cup winners have. Depth at center. Lapierre and Malhorta (who I like) aren’t cutting it. Burrows is better on the wing and will move back when Kesler is back (or at least he should). This is even more important this season/playoffs. the schedule is too grueling; you have to roll at least 3 lines, but the teams that are successful can roll 4 out consistently.

      • davebabychreturns - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:38 AM

        Hodgson had to be given buttery soft minutes in Vancouver because he doesn’t have the reach or mobility to play a strong two-way game.

        He’ll do fine in Buffalo where they won’t ask him to do that but in Vancouver the writing was on the wall when the team had Ryan Kesler slumming in a checking line role for most of the season.

        Obviously the Canucks have a problem with center depth right now what with Kesler out and Manny Malhotra a shadow of his former self (but still eating up full market value for a high end checking center on the team’s cap).

        Hopefully Jordan Schroeder can learn the ropes and be an effective third liner by the time the playoffs roll around and hopefully the Canucks get an asset back to further address this area in a Luongo trade.

        If not it’s going to have to be a deadline acquisition – or the Canucks will sit back and make their move next season instead.

    • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:17 AM

      but, but… he got someone who isn’t afraid to fight Lucic if they meet in the cup finals again. I find it funny that Buffalo was able to achieve what Gillis was trying to do, but they traded away their guy with “tough guy” to do it. The Bruins are tough to play against not because of one guy, but because they all have each others back. What Stafford did the other night makes buffalo a little scarier. They will both be good players, but it looks like the Sabres got a steal. I guess Hodgson wouldn’t dive like vigneault wanted.

      • davebabychreturns - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:33 AM

        Hodgson was pretty much the opposite of what the Canucks wanted, and he had much less value to them than to a franchise with no centres ahead of him on the depth chart (after they completed the long-rumoured Derek Roy trade).

        He’ll do well in Buffalo as they need a scoring center and can accept the warts on his game if he produces.. which he’s talented enough to do.

        Just like Kassian will do well in Vancouver, they need a player with size and toughness and skill and they’ll put up with his inconsistency and long development curve if he gives them a game like his last one every so often.

        As for the rest of your comments, well let’s just say it’s not surprising that a post like this has the trolls crawling out of the woodwork.

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:40 AM

        I am confused. Am I the troll? cause I think we said pretty much the same thing. I just gave credit to Buffalo for adopting a tougher way to play and Vancouver for failing at doing so. Is that trolling?

      • davebabychreturns - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:49 AM

        You’re clearly taking a biased approach to the motivations of anyone in the Canucks organization and then ridiculing them for what you assume is true (“Hodgson wouldn’t dive like Vigneault wanted” “he got someone who isn’t afraid to fight Lucic”).

        I’m calling it trolling because it’s nicer than calling it idiocy.

        I’d also like to address your claim that the Canucks have failed to be a tough team, the fact is that they were the more physical team in each of their first three series, and you could make a decent argument that they were more physical than the Bruins before Aaron Rome hospitalized Nathan Horton and the Bruins remembered what they were playing for.

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:03 PM

        Biased approach- I just think they are overrated. You are not taking a biased approach to the Canucks? Everyone not from Vancouver knows how much Lapierre, Kesler and the Sedin’s dive. Marchand can be dirty- as a Bruins fan I admit that, Thomas is nuts- I admit that, the canucks dive. The canucks are also fake tough – see weise. Nice dig on the hospitalizing Horton comment – who is the troll? it’s always nice to see guys brains get scrambled on dirty hits, isn’t it? I’ll do it. Idiot. I’ll save you the time. he wasn’t watching his pass any more than any other player. you make a pass you skate, he needs to know if the pass is caught and continue forward or turn and play d. If he skated into Rome and knocked himself out, you’d have something otherwise- watch more hockey. Largest Playoff suspension says it all. Also – the ref telling sedin – “He’s gotta get five; it was late” – paraphrasing. is toughness when you bite someone?

      • davebabychreturns - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:19 PM

        I don’t think the Sedins dive as badly as you think. Henrik Sedin was suffering from a back injury during the Finals and fell down a lot. Daniel stood around and took abuse as we all know, no embellishment or anything.

        Kesler, Burrows and Lapierre are all brutal for embellishment and I hate it.

        As for the Rome hit on Horton, it was very late and if it had happened the next season it would have been completely illegal even if delivered on time. Dirty hit. I said Rome hospitalized Horton because Rome hit Horton and then Horton went to the hospital, not because I enjoyed seeing it or I am making assumptions about anyone’s motivation or anything.

        (Seriously, in what world am I complimenting someone when I say they “hospitalized” someone? That’s a bad thing.)

        Horton could have done a lot to minimize impact but as I’ve said every single time his concussion problems are brought up on this site, even though I don’t like him as a player I don’t wish that kind of harm to anyone and I hope his problems are truly behind him now.

        As for the Canucks being “fake tough,” they go to the dirty areas and they play a physical game, nothing fake about that. They also try to win according to the rulebook, which is a double edged sword but that’s the path they’ve chosen. I don’t see it as being vastly more or less honorable than the “abuse the rules so badly they can’t possibly call them all” path that the Bruins and Ducks have taken in recent years.

        As for Dale Weise he was a 23 year old rookie who breached The Code, that was unfortunate. He needs to figure out his role in this league and stick to it, he may be good enough to be a third liner one day but right now he has to answer the bell (and if he doesn’t want to on a particular occasion he should keep his mouth shut).

        Anyway you can deny that you are in here stirring the pot but the fact is that you showed up in a thread about a potential Luongo trade and started throwing barbs around about the Canucks organization from top to bottom.. have you even mentioned Luongo yet?

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:35 PM

        Back injury?

      • davebabychreturns - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:44 PM

        Yeah yeah. Notice I said “as much as you think.”

        As I said the Canucks need to use the rulebook to their advantage to win games (whereas the Bruins want to keep the game outside of those parameters as much as possible) and that means drawing penalties.

        Henrik’s not immune to it.

        That being said if you think the Canucks are the only team in the league that does it – or for that matter if you think there is ANY team in the league that does not – you’re out to lunch.

      • kitshky - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:47 PM

        Not to get involved in other peoples conversation but;

        1- By the words of the Bruins involved Weise did not chicken out or break the code … if we’re gonna discuss something happened years ago let’s at least remember the details of what we’re talking about.

        2 – Both Hodgson and Kassian are having great starts to a shortened season that started without a training camp … after 2 – 3 games. Let’s calm down on pretending the true value of the deal has been resolved.

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:48 PM

        I hope luongo comes to the northeast (Coughtoronto). It will be good for the B’s. I simply responded to (presumably) a Sabres fan post about how Vancouver was trying to add grit as was Buffalo – Buffalo succeeded by trading arguably their grittiest player to Vancouver. I think Vancouver is soft that’s all.
        also- win by the book? is embellishing winning by the book. The Bruins aren’t dirty; most fans would agree who aren’t from MTL or VAN. They play tough and they don’t out up with anything. If you push them; they will push back- only harder. The Rangers play the same; the Kings started to with Brown and Richards, Philly does (yikes – that hurt) although they still employ dirty dirty useless players. Pittsburgh doesn’t that’s why they can’t win despite having the the two best players in the league( I know won one, but with 71,87,11 & 58 it should have been more).

      • bcousy - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:52 PM

        Pepper, allow me to clear up your apparent confusion: Yes, you are the troll.

    • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:30 AM

      Doubt it, in fact I think he’s happy to be rid of his agent and support group (rumoured to be an overly involved father) who were pressuring the Canucks to give Hodgson more ice time. They were more work than the rest of the players on the team combined.

      Hard to get past the 3rd line C role when you have a 1st line center who’s won the Hart and Art Ross and a 2nd line center who’s won the Selke ahead of you in the rotation. I guess Buffalo didn’t have any of those types of guys, eh?

      Hodgson I like, everyone else trying to guide his career not so much.

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:35 AM

        I am glad you have a selke and an art ross; how many times is Sedin engraved in the only trophy that matters? (Hint: not talking about presidents trophy)

      • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:44 AM

        Just as many times as any player ever from Buffalo. Go ahead and count.

        It’s not about calling Buffalo idiots and Vancouver gods, it’s about Hodgson having two all-star centers ahead of him on the Canucks yet his agent and father were pushing for more ice time. Hodgson has competition in Buffalo, no doubt, but no one cemented into those top 2 center roles, so it’s a pretty good gig when you get dropped on a line between Vanek and Pominville.

        But feel free to continue to try and insult someone saying they haven’t won a cup, that goes for a fair portion of the players currently in the league. There are even some great names of hockey that never got the chance to lift the Cup, like Dale Hawerchuk, Darryl Sittler, Peter Stastny, Mike Gartner, Marcel Dionne, and yes even Gilbert Perrault.

      • pepper2011 - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:54 PM

        I would prefer to see Buffalo not win. It would mean the Bruins didn’t. I don’t see Hawerchuck or Gartner fans talking about how many Richard trophies they won.

      • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:22 PM

        Everyone would prefer to not see a team other than there’s win the cup, since it means their team isn’t going to do so that year. That’s fairly obvious to all involved.

        It is nice that you’ve cleared up which team you’re cheering for and why you’d have to add insults to an otherwise reasonable post. It is true based on the discussion from the original comment by billsin20XX (ironic considering where you’ve taken this) that Buffalo doesn’t have anyone of either Henrik or Kesler’s calibre and that Hodgson was behind them in the pecking order if he stayed in Vancouver. It’s also true his agent at least had been asking for more ice time and that Cody himself sat down with Vigneault to ask for it as well.

        As far as players like Gartner and Hawerchuk, I celebrate their accomplishments as much as I do someone like Cam Neely’s. Ray Bourque is a great example of a player you can celebrate for individual achievements despite only winning the Cup with another team than the one you’re cheering for.

        Cup or not, do you forget what those players have achieved? Do people just dismiss that Gretzky holds a ton of NHL records because he won the Stanley Cup a number of times? More importantly, why does it apply to this thread of discussion based on billsin20XX’s comment? Think about that and then come back and try and dismiss Henrik or Kesler as players ahead of Hodgson in the Canucks roster.

  3. spongebobsportspants - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:10 AM

    Who’s gonna be the dummy team that takes on a ridiculous contract and help out Vancouver? Watch it be someone in their conference!!

    • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:37 AM

      The term might be long, but a $5.33M cap hit for a top goalie is a good deal. King Henrik and Rinne both have a cap hit of ~$7M, and then there’s Price, Ward, Miller, Backstrom, Kipper and Bryz all still at higher cap hits than Luongo.

      Even with the ‘Luongo Clause’ there are teams that will be interested, like those who want to spend as little as possible but still reach the cap floor. Seems like that deal would be pretty good to have a lower salary than cap hit before he retires and then get some extra cap hit tacked on for the years his salary was above his cap hit.

      • stakex - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:47 AM


        I don’t know where this notion that Luongo is a terrible goalie with a laughable contract comes from. Sure he has folded in the playoffs a couple times, but his regular season stats are top notch. There are plenty of teams that would be tickled just to make the playoffs and would kill to have a goalie of Luongos quality… so its not at all hard to imagine a trade happening IF the Canucks actually want to trade him.

        To that point, I’m not convinced they actually do want to trade him right now. Schneiders first game as the starter was a train wreck, and Luongo looked quite solid. If they trade Luongo and Schneider tanks, Gillis could end up without a job next year. So don’t expect a rush to trade Luongo until its clear Schneider can actually handle the starting role.

      • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:58 AM

        It comes from people swallowing what the media has told them and seeing some bad games at key times (most of which has shared responsibility with his teammates). Of any currently active goalie, he has some of the best career stats, and he’s still very capable of being the difference to making the playoffs for a non-playoff team.

        Even if the team he plays for gets swept in 4 because they’re not good enough, 2 home games of extra revenue is usually enough to convince an owner or two.

        Schneider will be ok (and he was hardly the only top goalie to have a stinker on opening night), but you’re right that the benefit is there to carry two top goalies in a shortened season. Gillis has said a deal like this takes time, so I expect he’ll have that to get it settled to a point where he does get value back in the deal rather than other teams’ throwaways.

    • lordfletcher - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:19 PM

      spongebobsportspants –
      Who’s gonna be the dummy team that takes on a ridiculous contract and help out Vancouver? Watch it be someone in their conference!!

      wo would it be? No one in their division needs a goalie. Wild, Flames, Av’s, EDM …. so that leaves.
      Phoenix – no
      Los Angeles – heck no
      Detroit – heck no
      Nashville – heck no
      Dallas – no
      San Jose – maybe ???
      Columbus – maybe but I highly doubt it
      St. Louis – heck no
      Anaheim – maybe
      Chicago – maybe

      then figure his current salary 5.33 till the end of time and that leaves Chicago out, san jose out, anaheim needs to sign current roster players for next year so they’re a no… that leaves only columbus but with Bobrovsky’s hot start, I doubt they are feeling the need to make a deal, and I doubt columbus is looking to bring in a franchise goalie at this time…. so who would it be ???? I have no clue :)

  4. timmmah10 - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:58 AM

    If I’m Luo, then I am PRAYING that I get sent to a team that is at least middle of the pack so that I can make something happen…

    More than likely, he’ll end up going to a Columbus type… but if I’m Edmonton, and I am serious about winning, I would move someone like Gagner for Luo. Dubnyk isn’t going to take you to the cup any more than Luo is, but Luo gives you a better chance of making the playoffs.

    • dreamzilla - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:02 PM

      well it aint gonna be the oilers, and personally i dont want him not with that salary and im not parting with my untouchables as of yet , unless we are getting crosby malkin or stamkos , hall eberle hopkins , yakupov and schultz are untouchable…id say send him to the flyers because there goaltending issues are a mess

      also i dont see them dealing within the division, and i think ti will take a little more than Gagner to pull the trigger if he were to come to the oil, maybe a pick or a prospect from the system, possibly magnus …now i can see gagner, magnus and a pick for a deal , and buy out Khabibulin

    • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:31 PM

      The Oilers are not a reasonable destination for Luongo. Their a divisional rival with Vancouver, they trust Dubnyk (I would too and I’m an Canucks fan) enough to get the job done, they have to leave ca space to re-sign their young stars as they grow, and it’ll take more than just Gagner to convince Vancouver to trade him.

      Edmonton doesn’t want to give up pieces that will come back to haunt them and Vancouver is aware of the exact same thing. That’s magnified 5 times when you play against that opponent more than you do against other teams outside your own division.

      • timmmah10 - Jan 22, 2013 at 2:14 PM

        I don’t see many teams jumping into the Luo sweepstakes, so I’m making the assumption that they might throw out the idea of NOT trading within division.

        Also, I know it read that way but I did not think Gagner would be enough straight up, but Gagner, a first rounder and one of Zharkov, Hartikainen, or Klefbom… that could be enough. They’ll have Gagne for now and the pick/player for later.

      • elvispocomo - Jan 22, 2013 at 3:07 PM

        Certainly more reasonable with the extra explanation, but still unlikely. I think the Canucks will have enough offers at least close to what Edmonton would want to give up (since they’d only improve a little in goal) to consider going elsewhere. A divisional deal for anything other than depth players usually requires an overpayment.

        Think of how many divisional deals have ever been done in the modern NHL and it’s very few. Then think of how many of those were for reasonably significant roster players and that leaves only a handful. Then look at the value in that handful of deals and consider who overpaid to get the player they wanted.

        The Kessel deal is a great example (and one of the only ones) that was supposed to be not as bad because the picks they gave up – two 1st rounders and a 2nd rounder – were projected to be lower in the draft. Burke thought the Leafs were closer to a playoff spot than they were and instead they turned out to be lottery picks. Edmonton would likely have to include their 1st as incentive to make it happen, but they’d be hoping its middle of the draft order or lower.

  5. dreamzilla - Jan 22, 2013 at 11:58 AM

    well it aint gonna be the oilers, and personally i dont want him not with that salary and im not parting with my untouchables as of yet , unless we are getting crosby malkin or stamkos , hall eberle hopkins , yakupov and schultz are untouchable…id say send him to the flyers because there goaltending issues are a mess

    • kitshky - Jan 22, 2013 at 12:55 PM

      No chance it’s the Oilers … but not because people are still (ridiculously) stuck in this world where they think a $5.3 cap hit is somehow prohibitive.

      It’s because there’s zero chance the Canucks trade Luongo to a team they play at least 8 times a year, and a team whose success will come at their own expense.

      • lordfletcher - Jan 22, 2013 at 1:55 PM

        it isn’t the dollar amount that concerns me, it’s the years remaining. Doesn’t his contract expire near 2020?

        -Wild fan (yes I understand the irony)

      • kitshky - Jan 22, 2013 at 2:04 PM

        Irony … why whatever do you mean? ha ha

        Yes the salary cap is actually going down next year, but looking at the general trend of …well everything financial ever, I think it’s a pretty safe bet that by 2020 $5.3 on your cap is not going to be that big of a deal / have any noteworthy impact on how you budget your team. (Even without any new considerations in the CBA regarding salary and cap hits.)

      • lordfletcher - Jan 22, 2013 at 2:08 PM

        I hear ya.

        again, I am not worried about the dollar amount at all, 5.3 is a great cap hit for a goalie of his ability… its just that luongo may not be a servicable goalie by 2018 or so. That could be a devastating cap hit for someone who isn’t starting or playing at all. and a buyout on a cap hit of 5.3 would be huge

      • timmmah10 - Jan 22, 2013 at 2:17 PM

        I’m assuming that they would rather trade him than carry his total cap hit to ride the pine, however with Schneider starting out with poop in the sheets, they might need to keep the insurance policy for a bit.

        Philly already has a higher price goalie, doubt they carry 2 nor do they have the cap space to.

        Bryz is terrible because of porous defense just as much as his own psychosis.

  6. letsgopens8771 - Jan 22, 2013 at 3:59 PM

    So… At first, he said he wasn’t going to do it, and now he’s going to do it? Make up your mind already unless you want an unfair deal like the Rick Nash trade.

  7. blackhawks2010 - Jan 23, 2013 at 12:00 AM

    Schneider needs to step up and own the starter spot.

Top 10 NHL Player Searches
  1. P. Kane (1829)
  2. P. Kessel (1704)
  3. M. Richards (1461)
  4. P. Datsyuk (1274)
  5. N. Backstrom (1185)