Monday, February 4, 2013
Luongo and the next Cory Schneider
By Tom Carpenter
Most everyone expected the Vancouver Canucks to ship goaltender Roberto Luongo away once the lockout was lifted, but general manager Mike Gillis has vowed to remain patient. He is willing to take his time and wait for the right trade proposal to come his way. In the meantime, the Canucks have the benefit of having a maturing Cory Schneider and the veteran Luongo to man their net.
The question remaining, then, is whether a team will be so inclined as to make Gillis the right offer. Such a team would have to be properly motivated to woo Luongo away with a solid proposal, and ESPN NHL Insider Craig Custance believes there are some teams with young netminders who should give Luongo some serious consideration:
Craig CustanceRoberto Luongo could help Caps, others
"Having Luongo allowed the Canucks to develop Schneider at the perfect pace. He got parts of three seasons in the American Hockey league for seasoning. In the NHL, his games played grew from 25 to 33 to whatever number he reaches this season. And despite the slow start, there's no doubt he's ready to be a No. 1. It's a strategy that could very well work for the next team Luongo joins. He could help ease the pressure on James Reimer or Ben Scrivens in Toronto, allowing them to develop into consistent NHL goalies without having to carry the load. Same thing with Jacob Markstrom in Florida. And yes, even Washington. It may not be realistic or even discussed in Washington, but one NHL source liked the Capitals as a destination for Luongo for that very reason. Right now, you have two young goalies in Braden Holtby and Michal Neuvirth still trying to establish themselves as consistent NHL starters. It's also quite possible that the best goalie in the system is prospect Philipp Grubauer, a fourth-round pick in 2010. He has a 1.89 goals-against average and .930 save percentage in the AHL this season. You could easily see the benefits of adding Luongo as the mentor and then developing one of these goalies into the next Cory Schneider."