The Province's Jason Botchford wrote an article giving the Winter Classic cancellation a "whatever" to which I completely agree. But the more interesting portion of his piece was the second part which states:
If the Canucks are looking to splash something on their currently useless $5 million Rogers Arena scoreboard, may we suggest:
Thank you, Kevin Lowe.
After The Province recently revealed the Edmonton Oilers were the surprise latecomer in the Roberto Luongo sweepstakes, Lowe stoked the fires by admitting publicly he’s not exactly overwhelmed with confidence when he looks at his situation in net.
"Goaltending is a question mark," Lowe admitted in a radio interview. "And I say that in all respect to Devan Dubnyk and Khabi (Nikolai Khabibulin). Khabi has been injured and he’s approaching 40.
"He’s given us stretches of strong goaltending but his health is one thing."
On Dubnyk, he continued: "He’s got to go out and prove it now if he’s going to take over the No. 1 job."
On Halloween, Strombone1 (Yeah-yeah Luongo's Twitter account) stated:
"Here's a trick and a treat all rolled into one!"
and then provided a link to an image of himself wearing a vintage Grant Fuhr mask. Nice touch. Fuhr was Luongo's idol growing up. The tweet naturally added fuel to the fire. Well played.
So we can speculate all we want while the lockout drags on. The GM's cannot trade players or negotiate while there is a lockout, but as Botchford truthfully put it: Who's gonna know if they do (negotiate) anyway? Hell, I would be hanging with other GM's over the phone or in a secret location, downing the rum, swapping stories and talking shop.
The Oilers' interest does give the Canucks some leverage in a bidding for Luongo's services if a season is to happen. If the lockout lasts all season long and a CBA is reached in the spring/summer of 2013, then the leverage may grow because of the number of UFA goalies. Here is a list of which notable goaltenders hit UFA status next summer:
-Tim Thomas (hahaha)
-Nicolai Khabibulin (old and done)
-Jose Theodore (hmmmm)
-Mike Smith and Jason Labarbera in Phoenix
There are a few starting goalies on that list that could leave those teams desperately looking for a replacement. If there is no NHL season and no trade deadline, then that opens up the summer (pre-July 1st) for any trades. This would give the Canucks even more options it seems.
Getting back to the NOW, Botchford suggested a Luongo - Jordan Eberle swap possibility / example. That got me thinking:
1. Sure, I guess....
2. Let's rosterbate!
Let's (for the hell of it) make Toronto, Edmonton and Florida (yea right) the three most probable destinations for Roberto Luongo at this point.
You be the GM! Which team would you rather do the deal with? Who has the players / prospects you prefer?
I'll give my two cents to get the ball rolling. There are rumors out there of a Luongo for Leafs' center Tyler Bozak. I don't want another center. I think Maxim Lapierre / Manny Malhotra are fine at the 3rd line center position. I would prefer a winger for line 2 because I think line 2 needs more options. Not Jordan Eberle because I am preferring some more size and grit on the team. Let's say:
What say you?