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Luongo Will Waive NTC If Asked

Today the Vancouver Canucks met with the media and Luongo stated he would waive his no-trade contract if asked to.

Now the question becomes, who wants Luongo?

He just turned 33, his cap hit of $5,333,333 runs through the 2021-22 season (CapGeek).

added 3:45pm, Below, watch video as Luongo answers questions from the media…

Filed in: NHL Teams, Vancouver Canucks, | KK Hockey | Permalink
  Tags: roberto+luongo

Comments

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if i was luongo I’d get out of the fast.  vancouver’s post-season failures this season had nothing to do with him.  he’s oddly become the scape goat for all failures there.  I’d say f you vancouver.

Schneider is good but the first time he starts struggling or is in a slump I will be curious to see how the Van. fans treat him.

Posted by tbassett on 04/24/12 at 03:48 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

Now the question becomes, who wants Luongo?

Nobody now that Pierre Gauthier is out of a job.

Posted by Hank1974 on 04/24/12 at 03:49 PM ET

Zaze's avatar

CBJ?

Posted by Zaze on 04/24/12 at 04:08 PM ET

Primis's avatar

Luongo’s stock has dropped so far that I don’t even know that there’s a starting job for him anywhere.

Even in Columbus, Steve Mason is younger and still has upside left now that someone realized his pads could be bigger.  What upside is left for Roberto?

Posted by Primis on 04/24/12 at 04:17 PM ET

awould's avatar

vancouver’s post-season failures this season had nothing to do with him…. he’s oddly become the scape goat for all failures there

He let in 7 goals in 2 games. I think it’s fair to throw a little blame his way… maybe more than a little blame given the size of his paycheck.

Posted by awould on 04/24/12 at 04:19 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

maybe more than a little blame given the size of his paycheck.

Not to mention length of contract.
The Canucks would have to throw in Kesler in order to get a team to take Luongo and that albatross of a contract.

I’ll bet money that the Canucks put a tonne of pressure on Bettman to get an amnesty clause in the next CBA.

Posted by Hank1974 on 04/24/12 at 04:23 PM ET

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Can you say CHICAGO. or somehow TAMPA BAY - too bad Brian Burke has such a shitty relationship with Vancouver.

Posted by Acim on 04/24/12 at 04:28 PM ET

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Philly.

Posted by Garth on 04/24/12 at 04:32 PM ET

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I’m going to try to explain this just once, because people seem to have no knowledge of A) How Luongo’s contract is structured and B) the financial interests of certain NHL team.

Luongo’s contract was front loaded. The Canucks, as a very rich team, have no problem with this. Why pay Luongo a ton of money instead of making it even, like for Ovechkin? Because he was *never* going to play the final 3 years of his contract. The benefit for the Canucks? His cap hit is smaller, which means they can sign other players with that extra cap space. they pay him $10 million last year, but can load up on other players instead of that amount being reflected in the cap.

How does this help another team? Well, lets say that you are a POOR NHL team. If you trade for him, the amount of money you ACTUALLY pay him is LESS than his salary cap. You get to the cap floor (which they need to do!!), while spending less real money. This is exactly what Florida/Phoenix/etc. want. And you get one of the best goalies in the NHL over the past few years (I say this strictly based on stats).

There will be no problem in moving Roberto Luongo when the Canucks chooses to do so. Because he provides something a lot of teams (other than rich teams, like the Canucks) will want: a higher cap hit than the actual amount of money going into his bank account.

Posted by Mike from Toronto on 04/24/12 at 04:52 PM ET

Savage Henry's avatar

Mike is correct.  I’ve been waiting for some of the bottom-dwellers (salary-wise—NYI, FLA, ATL before the move, etc) or teams having serious money problems (NJD, PHX, ATL before the move, etc) to load up on a ton of front loaded contracts that are in the ‘upside down’ years.

Along that line, how long before a team that’s near the cap trades for a long-term injured player (or if this isn’t allowed, trades for an injured player for the purposes of placing them on LTIR)?

Posted by Savage Henry on 04/24/12 at 05:09 PM ET

Luongo-is-my-hero's avatar

i honestly see him going to tampa bay, they have a good young and upcoming team and are in need of goaltending.  Furthermore he has a house in Florida so he also gets to stay close to family

Posted by Luongo-is-my-hero on 04/24/12 at 05:14 PM ET

awould's avatar

Posted by Mike from Toronto on 04/24/12 at 03:52 PM ET

Thanks for the tutorial. According to Capgeek, Luongo will be paid over $6.7MM per year through 2018 with a cap hit of $5.3MM. So your facts are wrong. It’s good practice to get the basic facts right if you’re going to start by being condescending. So a poor team wouldn’t really benefit in the way you say until the 2018-2019 season.

The other problem with your argument is it leaves out the potential suitors who are both POOR and NEED A GOALIE. Phoenix isn’t one of them. Florida might be. Tampa should be. Beyond that, who? Chicago might be rethinking their goaltending but they have no cap room. NJ is probably in the mix, but if the argument is that Luongo would be better off out of a fish bowl, NJ isn’t ideal.

And the other issue is there are other goalies entering FA this summer and a lot of them next year. I’m sure some team will take a chance on a headcase like Luongo but more would probably be happier with a decent goalie or an up-and-comer who isn’t a headcase. I think the list of teams that Gillis may have a serious conversation with is very short. The Canucks are not in a strong position, so the comment about tossing in Kesler to get Luongo out may not be far off.

Posted by awould on 04/24/12 at 05:15 PM ET

Luongo-is-my-hero's avatar

I guess I might have to change my nick, if he gets traded.  Man, gotta feel for the guy, he really got a rough ride in vancouver.  Fans for the most part are great, but there’s always those fairweather fans who just make Vancouver fans in general seem worse than they are.

Posted by Luongo-is-my-hero on 04/24/12 at 05:16 PM ET

Hank1974's avatar

Mike, you make some good points, but whoever gets him still has to pay him $6.7M for the next SIX seasons.
That’s not exactly a bargain for a 33-year-old tender who chokes in the clutch and is on the decline.

If he only had 2 or 3 more seasons at that pay, then it might be worth it.
But there’s probably only a handful of teams that can afford to take a flyer on a guy simply to get their cap above the floor mark.

Posted by Hank1974 on 04/24/12 at 05:17 PM ET

Savage Henry's avatar

Along that line, how long before a team that’s near the cap trades for a long-term injured player (or if this isn’t allowed, trades for an injured player for the purposes of placing them on LTIR)?

Never mind, just realized that this doesn’t make any sense.

Posted by Savage Henry on 04/24/12 at 05:22 PM ET

Paul's avatar

awould, I cleaned up the double posting.

Posted by Paul from Motown Area on 04/24/12 at 05:23 PM ET

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awould—My intention was not to be condescending. The reality, though, is that it wasn’t some idiot drawing up these contracts. They read the rules, and figured out a loophole.

Regardless, the “value” Roberto Luongo holds to those teams is the 5.33 cap hit in the final years. Even if he is not playing, those teams get to *actually* pay him 1 million, while getting dragged up to the cap floor by the remaining space.

Is it an expensive short term proposition? Yes—the 6.7 isn’t cheap. But the long term benefit is substantial. Also, Luongo is by no means declining based on his statistical performance, and people’s idea of him “choking” conveniently ignores two shutouts in the Stanley Cup Finals and a Gold Medal.

Any team trading for Luongo also gets the benefit of, say, 5 years from now having a cap structure on this player that would be very beneficial to a poor team. It’s not all about “Am I paying this player to start in goal”. It’s also about “how little money can I spend to ice a team and get revenue sharing dollars.”

Posted by Mike from Toronto on 04/24/12 at 05:35 PM ET

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Regardless, the “value” Roberto Luongo holds to those teams is the 5.33 cap hit in the final years.

Well that’s wonderful, but nobody is talking about whether Vancouver should trade him in 2018 when his actual pay is less than his cap hit, people are talking about whether he should be traded now when his actual pay is more than his cap hit.

If you want to look at what the poorer teams are doing, take a look at the Islanders’ contracts with Kyle Okposo and Michael Grabner.  They have cap hits of $2.8M and $3M respectively but both were actually paid $1M this year, will get $2M next year and their pay will go up each successive year of their contracts.  They’re doing the opposite of what Vancouver did, getting these guys for cheap with the ability to trade them in a couple years to teams who can afford to pay more while giving them more reasonable cap hits.

Posted by Garth on 04/24/12 at 05:43 PM ET

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Frans Nielsen also has a contract like Okposo’s and Grabner’s.

Posted by Garth on 04/24/12 at 05:44 PM ET

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and people’s idea of him “choking” conveniently ignores two shutouts in the Stanley Cup Finals and a Gold Medal.

Do you know why they “conveniently ignore” those?  Becuase he was pulled twice in the finals as well as letting in eight goals in a third game.  Oh, and he was pulled twice in the first round too and lost the starting job to Schneider in Game 6 of the first round, and the only reason he got back in the net was because Schneider hurt himself.

Posted by Garth on 04/24/12 at 05:52 PM ET

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Garth—I thought the Islanders deals were for them to be able to benefit from a new arena (i.e. they would have more money to pay once that gets figured out). Correct me if I’m wrong.

My only point is that there is significant upside to certain teams in the way Luongo’s contract is structured. Not all teams. Certain teams. And yes, any team would love to have Luongo in 2018 to be able to take advantage of this structure. It is by no means an albatros—It was designed to work around the system.

Does it matter today, with the possible of a trade this year? Absolutely it does. You can’t tell me that NHL teams don’t take a longer-term view of things. If they didn’t, every contract would be for one season. There is significant value in Luongo’s contract, because the Canucks have already absorbed several of the “higher pay then cap hit” seasons.

Posted by Mike from Toronto on 04/24/12 at 06:02 PM ET

awould's avatar

Posted by Mike from Toronto on 04/24/12 at 04:35 PM ET

My apologies, I misunderstood. As for the loophole, the problem is when Luongo gets cheap, where the value is as you say, he’ll be 39 years old - at that point, he very easily could be overpaid at $500k a season as a backup, or $1 a season as a spectator. The reason it’s a loophole, or at least the criticism, is that it is geared to lower the cap hit by dragging out several years at a very low wage precisely because the player is expected to be either retired or benched. I think Luongo’s contract is one of these.

Also, Luongo is the definition of a choker. Great regular season, blows it in big games in the playoffs. Your argument conveniently ignores what happened the other 5 games of the Finals. He let in 20 goals, including 3 in game 7. His GAA in those 5 games was 4.0. His Finals GAA, including those shutouts was 2.86. His career GAA is 2.52. I’ll take a guy who can deliver consistency over a guy who will bust out 2 shutouts and crap the bed the other 5 games. So, when people call him a choker, that’s what they’re referring to. He’s a headcase. This year’s playoffs saw a terrible 3.5 GAA just days after finishing his regular season with a 2.41 GAA. His GAA against LA this regular season was under 2. So besides the lump in his throat, what changed?

Posted by awould on 04/24/12 at 06:05 PM ET

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Season   Team   Lge   GP   GA   GAA   W   L   T   Pct

2006-07   Vancouver Canucks   NHL   76   171   2.28   47   22   6   0.921
2007-08   Vancouver Canucks   NHL   73   168   2.38   35   29   9   0.917
2008-09   Vancouver Canucks   NHL   54   124   2.34   33   13   7   0.92
2009-10   Vancouver Canucks   NHL   68   167   2.57   40   22   4   0.913
2010-11   Vancouver Canucks   NHL   60   126   2.11   38   15   7   0.928
2011-12   Vancouver Canucks   NHL   55   127   2.41   31   14   8   0.919


Tell me that you would honestly want to have these numbers playing in your net for the next six years.

Posted by assmoses on 04/24/12 at 06:06 PM ET

awould's avatar

There is significant value in Luongo’s contract, because the Canucks have already absorbed several of the “higher pay then cap hit” seasons.

Earlier you made the argument that the value was because his pay is below the high cap hit. You devoted several sentences to how it benefits a cash poor team need ing to reach the cap floor. Nevermind that you were wrong about the basic facts, it was your theory. Your new argument is that the value is there because the Canucks have already absorbed a lot of the overpayment in the initial years. But this doesn’t really benefit a cash poor team needing to hit the cap floor. So which is it?

Posted by awould on 04/24/12 at 06:17 PM ET

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Season   Team   Lge   GP   GA   GAA   W   L   T   Pct  

1999-00   New York Islanders   NHL   24   70   3.25   7   14   1   0.904
2000-01   Florida Panthers   NHL   47   107   2.44   12   24   7   0.92
2001-02   Florida Panthers   NHL   58   140   2.77   16   33   4   0.915
2002-03   Florida Panthers   NHL   65   164   2.71   20   34   7   0.918
2003-04   Florida Panthers   NHL   73   172   2.43   25   33   14   0.931
2005-06   Florida Panthers   NHL   75   213   2.97   35   30   9   0.914

Or the six years before that.

Luongo has six more [real] years left on his contract. You pay him 6.7 million and the cap hit is 5.3 million.

His playing numbers are *stellar* numbers. What more can you possible ask for? He is a workhorse goalie whose save percentage if 5th overall alltime.  The group just ahead of him [by slim % points] have played a third to half the number of games he has.

If his next 6 years are anything resembling his first or second sets of six years he is going to gong to finish his career with his name tucked in the record books next to Hall, Roy, Sawchuck, Hainsworth and just behind Brodeur and Hasek.

“Luongo’s stock has dropped so far that I don’t even know that there’s a starting job for him anywhere”
[

Seriously?!!?

Posted by assmoses on 04/24/12 at 06:23 PM ET

J.J. from Kansas's avatar

assmoses makes some good points.

I’m not even reading. I’ve just always wanted to say that.

Posted by J.J. from Kansas on 04/24/12 at 06:29 PM ET

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Awoud—to clarify. The value to a cap-floor team is that his salary will be lower than his cap hit.

The benefit to the Canucks was always that he would “burn” the last years of his contract (by retiring) and this removes about 16 million dollars from the total cap hit of the entire contract.

Because the Canucks have been paying more real cash than his cap hit for X years, the cap floor team gets to spend less cash to get that same cap hit for Y years. Those Y years are hugely beneficial, because it helps them get to the floor while spending less real money.

The benefit to a cap floor team is that they get to spend less real money for more of a cap hit. It’s essentially the opposite of what the Canucks were trying to do, which is reduce the cap hit of the contract. But for different teams in different financial situations, it makes the world of difference.

For a poor team, there is tremendous value to those last 3 years (16 million in cap hit, 3.6 in real money) because it gets them to the floor, and they get revenue sharing. It doesn’t even matter if Luongo is playing or not at that point, as long as he’s on the books.

Posted by Mike from Toronto on 04/24/12 at 06:52 PM ET

awould's avatar

Awoud—to clarify. The value to a cap-floor team is that his salary will be lower than his cap hit.

I understand your logic completely. But let’s take it from the beginning. The loophole is designed to enable rich teams to pay a guy a lot while staying under the cap ceiling. The criticism of these contracts has always been that the player would not *really* be around in the final seasons, the Y years in your explanation.

Luongo’s contract is 12 years. He just finished year two. Of the 10 years remaining, 6 have a higher salary than cap hit. This scenario benefits the rich team trying to stay under the cap ceiling. The final 4 have a lower salary than cap hit, the scenario that benefits the poor team trying to reach the cap floor.

Your original argument stated quite clearly that poor teams would be interested in Luongo now because his salary is lower than his cap hit, thus enabling them to reach the ceiling with less actual cash out of pocket. My point originally is that this is not actually true, as his salary his higher than the cap hit for the next 6 years. You continue to argue that despite this, his contract will still appeal to the poor team. I disagree. The benefit you describe, which would undoubtedly be a benefit to a poor team were it true, does not come to fruition for SIX MORE YEARS. And when it does, he will be on the very tail end of his career, 39 years old, and it’s a big assumption that he would even want to continue playing for such little money. I don’t believe a poor team today would sign Luongo so that in 6 years they can reach the cap ceiling for less cash. I’d be surprised if anyone who is reading our discussion thinks so either. My argument isn’t that Luongo is untradeable, just that the rationale you use doesn’t make sense to me.

My take on Luongo is that Vancouver is in a tough spot and will have to take a bath to get Luongo off their books. Take his contract, his rep as a playoff choker and the teams who would even be interested shrinks considerably. So instead of 29 potential trading partners, they probably have more like 4. Which makes it a buyer’s market for a very hard to sell item.

Posted by awould on 04/24/12 at 07:37 PM ET

awould's avatar

I think Luongo will get bought out after the new CBA is settled.

Posted by awould on 04/24/12 at 07:41 PM ET

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Correct me if I’m wrong.

Yeah, I guess if you believe the line they’re trying to feed us.

Posted by Garth on 04/24/12 at 08:13 PM ET

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Why anyone would think Chicago would even consider that guy for a moment.. In big games they’ve chased him half a dozen times and so have the Kings and Bruins.  Sure he will get you a gret seed in the playoffs, but look what that is worth this post season.

I still think the Hawks will look at Jonathan Bernier in L.A.  If and that is a big IF, Vancouver can find someone to on Luongo’s silly contract, it will be the trade/move of the year.  He’ll see plenty of time inthe reg season, and then come mid february, Schneider will start to get more and more action as a warm up for the playoffs.  Luongo is an over-priced backup now and mark my words, in 3-5 years, he’ll be in the minors… or Europe.

Posted by sean_o_sean on 04/24/12 at 11:16 PM ET

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Bryzgalov: 5.6m per year.
Miller: 6.25m per year.
Kipper: 5.83m per year.
Cam Ward: 6.4m per year.
Backstrom: 6.0m per year.
Rinne: 7.0m per year.
Lundqvist: 6.875m per year.

With the exception of Cam Ward, all of these goalies have higher cap hits and the same number of cups as Luongo. Yes, his contract is substanstially longer than most, but it does not change his CAP HIT in a salary cap world. 4 of the 8 goalies above did not even make the playoffs. But no one is calling any of these players choke artists or bad goaltenders. In fact I’m sure most people would agree that they are excellent hockey players.

Luongo just happens to be FAR more polarizing because he is easier to point a finger at than any other player on the Canucks roster, a roster that most hockey fans choose to dislike in the first place. Regardless of his 2 shutouts in the SCF and the fact he was being pulled in the same series, it doesnt change the fact that not 1 person on the rest of the roster could put the puck past tim thomas, not to mention having a d-core of mainly #5 and 6 dmen. He could have pitched a 1.00 gaa and still lost the series, but people would still hate on him simply because they need someone to point a finger at. Was it Luongos fault that the Canucks are out this year? If you actually watched the games rather than the highlights and statistics, the answer would be a resounding no.

Does anyone ever wonder why Team Canada went with Luongo, a goalie who supposedly is a head case choke artist, over Fleury, who had already been to the SCF twice, winning the cup once? Food for thought, armchair gm’s. Canada’s brightest hockey minds chose Luongo to play over Fleury. Hmm. I guess we’ll just completely ignore that one and move on.

Its funny that people try to call him a choke artist, when the majority of the above mentioned goaltenders havent even given their teams a chance to compete deep into the playoffs. I would guarantee that if the Rangers are upset in the first round by the Senators, NO ONE is going to blame Lundqvist. But if it was Roberto Luongo, they would lynch him.

Remember that time that Luongo was made the CAPTAIN of an nhl franchise? The pressure on the 30 starting goalies in the league is already tremendous, but people seem to overlook this seemingly obvious red flag on his career. The pressure on him in Vancouver is like no other athlete I’ve seen in the last 2 decades. Anyone would have trouble functioning properly in the workplace with the type of scrutiny Luongo faces on a day to day basis from the thousands of “hockey-know-it-alls” that surface whenever he makes a single mistake.

I’m a thoroughbred Luongo-disliker from Vancouver (I won’t say hate because I can respect what he has done and how good a hockey player he is, I just prefer positioning over athleticism), but to not appreciate that he has taken the Canucks everywhere they have been as a franchise, while taking Canada back to where it belongs in the hockey world, and in doing so somehow disproportion the negatives with the positives is just moronic.

Posted by Liam on 04/24/12 at 11:54 PM ET

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and in doing so somehow disproportion the negatives with the positives is just moronic.

Um, OK.

Olympic hockey is not NHL playoff hockey.  Sorry, but you can’t use Olympic results to try and prove NHL worth.

And to say that weighing the negatives of losing three games for his team in the finals over winning two isn’t disproportionate or moronic.

Neither is placing a lot of value on the fact that the ten goals he gave up in games 4 and 5 of the first round carry a lot of the responsibility for allowing the Blackhawks to come back from 3-0 series deficit to almost eliminating the Canucks.

Neither is placing a lot of value on the 12 goals allowed in games 3 and 4 of the Finals, which again allowed Boston to get back into the series.  Or the three goals he allowed in 8 minutes in game 6 that allowed the Bruins to tie up the series.

If Vancouver had won the Cup, with Luongo in net, that would’ve gone a long way to silencing his critics (he’s be halfway to being able to duplicate Patrick Roy’s response to trash talk from Jeremy Roenick) but the fact that they lost, and that his play was a very big contributor, can’t be ignored.

It would moronic to ignore the way he has played in some very big games.

Posted by Garth on 04/25/12 at 12:09 AM ET

awould's avatar

It would moronic to ignore the way he has played in some very big games.

Exactly. It’s the performance in the big games that reveals the choke. In the biggest games, he lets in a substantially higher number of goals than in any average regular season game. Are there other factors? Sure. But he’s the biggest.

As for the big scary, mean spotlight he lives under in Vancouver, cry me a river.
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3uGlPDsFC5Y

Posted by awould on 04/25/12 at 01:03 AM ET

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