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Luongo was ‘shocked and surprised’ he didn’t end up in Toronto

Nov 1, 2013, 11:23 AM EDT

Roberto Luongo AP

Even Roberto Luongo thought he was going to be a Maple Leaf.

On Thursday, the Canucks goalie — who will face Toronto on Saturday at Rogers Arena — said he was confident he would be wearing the blue and white.

“I was pretty sure I was going to end up there,” Luongo told the Toronto Sun. “I was pretty shocked and surprised when I didn’t.”

There were two major instances in which Vancouver GM Mike Gillis tried to flip Luongo to Toronto — once at the 2012 NHL Entry Draft (when Brian Burke was at the Maple Leafs’ helm), then again at the ’13 trade deadline (when Dave Nonis was in charge).

Things heated up so much in ’13 that Luongo was actually pulled off the ice during practice to finalize what appeared to be a deal to the Leafs. But that deal fell apart, leading to Luongo’s infamous “my contract sucks” remarks.

This summer, Luongo put his Vancouver penthouse on the market in preparation to be dealt (again) — only to have the rug pulled out (again) when the Canucks flipped Cory Schneider to the Devils, making Bobby Loo the No. 1 goalie (again).

The 33-year-old netminder has been busy since, ranking among the NHL’s leaders in starts (12), shots faced (330) and time on ice (731:19) this season.

He’s pretty happy about the development.

“A lot has happened over the past year and a half, two years,” Luongo said. “To be honest, I’m just excited to be playing again and to play every night.”

  1. newjerseydevilsfanpuckcollection - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:35 AM

    What I find ironic is all of this id that Gillis signed him to this rediculous contract in Sept. 09, and tried to shop him 3 years later….on a 12 year contract. (only 25% of the contract was served)

    Luongo on the one hand is a great player…and has the numbers to prove it.

    And I do agree that the contract is a curse (even if it is front loaded).

    Maybe GM’s need to realize that long contracts seem to not pan out in any terms. Luongo, Kovalchuck, DiPietro, Lecavalier etc…

    They are a curse for all involved.

    • ibieiniid - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:49 AM

      “Maybe GM’s need to realize that long contracts seem to not pan out in any terms.”

      I think that’s what the 8-year limit in the newest CBA is for.

      • newjerseydevilsfanpuckcollection - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:54 AM

        Even the 8 year limit is still too long in my opinion in some circumstances.

        How many players will sign contracts that bring them into their lower 40’s. But home many of them will be done before they hit 40.

        Its a gamble that GM’s need to look at, but at the same time players need to realize that these long term contract only hurt the team they want to stay with “forever” in the end.

        They can easily be burried…a we have seen in the past.

      • ibieiniid - Nov 1, 2013 at 12:29 PM

        The term limit, though, was one of the biggest points of contention in the lockout. Players want it longer for obvious reasons, and coaches want it shorter for the same obvious reasons. I’m sure you know this, may have just slipped your mind, but at the end of the day, the player doesn’t care more about their organization than themselves (Don’t flame me here, not taking an anti-player stand, I know it works both ways). If you have an 8-year contract sitting in front of you, you’re gonna sign it. Whether it’s because of the payday or because of the self-confidence every player has in their future, they sign it. Dropping it below 8 years will no doubt cause another lockout.

    • davebabychreturns - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:58 AM

      Meh. We’ll see what the future brings and I can’t say I relished the year or so of “drama” (even though most of it existed in the minds of a few media honks) but the return on Schneider contrary to what most people think is pretty respectable.

      Look at it this way, for their 24th overall pick in 2004 the Canucks got maybe the league’s best insurance policy in goal for a few years, then a top ten pick in what is reputed to be the best draft in a decade.

      I’d say that’s good value and as long as Luongo’s game doesn’t fall off a cliff before his salary does the Canucks shouldn’t have too much of a problem with it.

    • imleftcoast - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:11 PM

      What I find ironic: NBC’s rivalry night has so far been rivalry-less. Luckily, NHL network shows good games on this weekend, including the Canucks and Leafs. Check your local listing for the channel NHL network appears on.

      • imleftcoast - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:14 PM

        And there’s a Pavel Bure tribute. For those who missed it, the Russian Rocket was what Ovechkin should aspire to become, leading the Canucks to the ’94 Stanley Cup Finals against the Rangers.

  2. joey4id - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:36 AM

    I was one of those here on PHT who was saying that it was time for Luongo to just show up at camp and play well. Winning is always the greatest healer of team or personal issues. Kudos to him to have done that after all the bleep bleep he had to go through. Maybe now he feels his contract doesn’t suck as he himself once said.

    • Jefe - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:47 AM

      Ah, the standard ‘Look at me, I’m so smart, I’ve been saying that for awhile’ response. Nobody is keeping score here.

      • pxland - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:50 AM

        One point for Jefe!

      • ibieiniid - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:54 AM

        if you’re judging on pwnage, ya. if you’re judging by information or opinion, Jefe gave less than joey…

      • pxland - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:56 AM

        Just like all judges, I was paid off.

        I was being ironical.

      • davebabychreturns - Nov 1, 2013 at 12:00 PM

        I still like to bring up the fact that I called the Minnesota Wild’s downfall in December 2011 (of course, it was even more obvious than Joey’s “playing well and winning games makes people happy” prediction).. sadly I’ve lost the link to the specific post I left that comment on.

      • pxland - Nov 1, 2013 at 12:10 PM

        Pfft… Predicting the “wild” to be bad is like shooting fish in a barrel.

        I predicted the downfall of society in 1982.

      • ibieiniid - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:28 PM

        I once picked the correct side of a coin in heads/tails.

  3. tyler4richardson - Nov 1, 2013 at 11:57 AM

    The Lu Tang Clan Ain’ Nothing To F’ With.

  4. blomfeld - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:12 PM

    blomfeld – May 7, 2013 at 2:09 AM

    ROBERTO MADOFF ?

    The bottom line friends is that Luongo’s ‘swank’ Yaletown condo will sell for at least 40% “less” than the original purchase price … much like his own idiotic ‘AIG-sized’ contract with the Canucks. I personally have no sympathy for these “agents of greed” and therefore “good riddance” to the lot of them !

    ——————————————————————-

    Friends, I offered this testimony almost six months ago and today on Nov 1st I ‘continue’ to stand by my prediction. Luongo ‘will’ return to Florida … say again, Luongo will return to Florida. The TO thing was never anything more than Nonis yanking Gillis’ chain as ‘payback’ for being usurped out of the Vancouver GM gig. As for Loo’s ‘high in the sky’ Yaletown palace ? Well, there never were any serious offers for that, much like his ridiculous ‘ til death do us part’ contract. What’s playing out now here in Vancouver (ie: a happy Loo and a calm Torts) is nothing more than an ‘illusion’ which is sure to soon evaporate, much like a mirage in the desert.

    • imleftcoast - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:41 PM

      You continue to be wrong and believe you are correct. Thanks for the update.

      • ibieiniid - Nov 1, 2013 at 2:13 PM

        lol come on man. you can’t see the humor in this one at least? he knows he was wrong about that (unless he comes back after this one with “no I don’t,” then i’ll rescind), he even brought up the fact that he, himself, was wrong. it’s just part of his headstrong character he’s playing. I find blom funnier and funnier, to be honest.

      • blomfeld - Nov 1, 2013 at 3:18 PM

        And why then is Luongo constantly smiling these days ?

        Leftist Coast – In all seriousness friend, haven’t you noticed lately how virtually every picture here at PHT features a happy ‘smiling’ Luongo ? Now I’m obviously not a scientist or anything, however I am savvy enough to know that in nature the ‘last’ thing you do when facing a ‘smiling’ creature is to let your guard down ! Whether it’s a hot chick, a dog, a monkey or some demented fish in a lake, presentation of the teeth is a ‘basic & primal’ expression of threat or impending danger. And failure to respect this unmistakeable warning sign in nature is often at the peril of those or are so ignorant and/or naive.

        Look friend, I’m a lifelong Vancouver resident here and I’ve been watching the Canucks since Day 1 (which was a 3-1 LA victory by the way) and therefore despite being an ardent King’s fan today, I will forever have a soft spot for you guys and I will always ‘watch your back’ so to speak. As you likely know, while love for a team like love for a woman is often marvelous and all-consuming, it can also be intoxicating and extremely ‘blinding’ to the truth. The bottom line as I see it, is that Luongo is an unscrupulous ‘manipulator’ who’s setting you guys up for a terrific ‘heart break’ in the not too distant future. And there’s simply no way I’m going to just stand by here and say nothing to you people ! … no way …

      • mcphillthy - Nov 1, 2013 at 4:34 PM

        The conspiracy theories of hockey….

      • mcphillthy - Nov 1, 2013 at 4:36 PM

        Blom… You’re clearly smoking better bud than me. I’m jealous

  5. crazemastercraze - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:32 PM

    Please past trade speculation stories about lulongo go away!

  6. rpiotr01 - Nov 1, 2013 at 1:52 PM

    Sooner or later this guy is going to make Tortorella’s head explode.

  7. thibbledorfpwent - Nov 1, 2013 at 9:53 PM

    No kidding… Also, Blom, in chimps the display of teeth is a gesture of submission, not aggression, maybe Bobby Lu just want you to mount him?

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