Last night the city of Chicago worried itself over some ridiculous rumors that the Blackhawks were interested in trading for Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo. Folks, Bobby Lu is not coming to Chicago, period, end of sentence. I don’t know who was smoking more crack, the dopes that started this rumor or the people who actually believed it. There are many reasons why this will not happen.
The biggest reason is the combination of Vancouver’s asking price and Luongo’s cap hit. The Blackhawks already have two NHL goaltenders on the roster in Corey Crawford and Ray Emery, whose combined cap hits are still much less than Luongo’s. If the salary cap goes up to 70 million, the Hawks will have about 8 million to play around with, barring any possible trades. I don’t think the Hawks will waste 5.3 million of that money on a goaltender who wets himself at the first sounds of “Chelsea Dagger.” Bringing Luongo in solves nothing and it creates a PR nightmare for the front office. The Hawks should make a couple of moves to free up even more space and try and make a run at this summer’s biggest prizes Zach Parise or Ryan Suter. If they really want to upgrade the goalie position see what Boston wants for Tim Thomas, don’t go after Roberto Reboundo.
Now, if in some bizarro world scenario where Bobby Lu actually winds up here, I don’t think I would be that upset about it. If you don’t think Luongo is better than Crawford and Emery than you need to put down the pipe! Yes, he has some meltdowns in the playoffs, but he has been a major scapegoat for the failures of an entire team, not just one player. The Canucks playoff failures do not all rest on the shoulders of Luongo but are shared by a team full of underachievers and choke artists. I for one would take great pleasure in seeing Luongo win a Cup in another city before Vancouver ever wins one. So where will the exiled Luongo end up? There have been some rumors swirling around about him returning to the Florida Panthers, but they have a salary cap situation they would have to work out first. If I were a betting man, my money would be Bobby Lu landing in Toronto. So sleep well Blackhawks fans, you will never have worry about the temptation of buying a Roberto Luongo Indian Head sweater.