Luongo, it's time to move on
Jul 6, 2012 / 8:22 pm
Roberto Luongo has tipped his hand.
The Canucks all-star goaltender discussed the possibility of leaving Vancouver during a radio interview on Friday, especially the spectre of moving to the rival Chicago Blackhawks.
Luongo was originally scheduled to be on Vancouver's 99.3 the Fox to speak about his participation in the World Series of Poker.
However, the discussion shifted to hockey and where he might play next season since the Canucks signed backup goalie Cory Schneider to a three-year deal worth US$12 million on June 28.
"I think it's really time to move on," said Luongo after being asked if he could insist on staying in Vancouver. "I don't think either one of us, either I demanded a trade or (Canucks general manager Mike Gillis) suggested a trade.
"It was a mutual understanding that it was time for Cory to take over."
The Canucks acquired Luongo in a trade with the Florida Panthers in 2006. He has 339 career wins in the NHL with 60 shutouts, a 2.52 goals-against average and a .919 saves percentage.
Since arriving in British Columbia, Luongo has led Vancouver to the playoffs five times. The Canucks have also won the President's Trophy for the league's best regular season record the past two years.
He has 32 wins in 61 playoff appearances with a 2.53 GAA and a .916 saves percentage.
When host Jeff O'Neil asked if there was "any chance in Hell" he'd play for Vancouver this fall, Luongo stayed ambivalent.
"I would never say never. You never know," said the 33-year-old Montreal native. "But I think we all know what's going on. We've all seen what's developed. At the end of the day, I think it's time to move on. And I'm OK with that. I had a great six years in Vancouver. It's a really wonderful city. I really enjoyed my time there.
"Unfortunately, I was not able to bring a Stanley Cup there. Probably my biggest regret. But it'll be remembered for six great years."
Although Luongo had a sterling reputation during the regular season, he sometimes struggled in the playoffs. Particularly disappointing was the Canucks' first-round exit this season to the Los Angeles Kings in five games.
Vancouver was the top seed in the Western Conference, with the eventual Stanley Cup champion Kings the No. 8 seed. Schneider replaced Luongo as the Canucks starting goaltender after Game 3.
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