23 Intently Staring Goalies
by lsefton on 04/30/12 at 02:28 PM ET
Roberto Luongo is in the market, and some have already decided that he’s going to the Maple Leafs. Or maybe he’s going to the Oilers, or maybe the Lightning. I could keep going, but there’s the rest of the league to list, and that would take awhile.
For a number of fans, writers, and analysts who are looking in from the outside of the Stanley Cup playoffs, this is the best recreation available. There’s a lot of “could we? should we? would we?” running loose across the ink and phosphors. It’s cheap, it’s fun, and hey, you don’t have to cut the check!
There’s some questions that have to be answered, before some GM makes a call, and Luongo gets new colors on his mask:
- Are you on the list of teams he’s willing to be traded to?
If your team isn’t on the approved list, you might as well take a crack at getting Tim Thomas. How, while there would be some sardonic symmetry for Luongo to go back to the Islanders. Remember the Islanders? They drafted him, and traded him, because Di Pietro, he of the exploding kneecaps, was going to be their future).
- Do you have something the Canucks want?
This isn’t exactly a fire sale—the Canucks are going to want something back. That may be draft picks, so are you willing to trade away the future for Luongo right now?
- Can you afford Luongo?
He’s a heavy hit on anyone’s cap, and he’s going to be for the foreseeable future.
- Is Luongo the fix for your problem?
If your team can’t score, it still won’t be able to score. If your team is old and hurting , it’s going to keep getting older and keep hurting
And as a corollary to the above, Vancouver’s GM isn’t going to succumb to bouts of temporary insanity and deal Luongo for a bag of pucks.
One team Luongo won’t be going to (or more precisely, shouldn’t go to), according to Jesse Rogers at ESPN Chicago, is the Chicago Blackhawks:
Luongo said he would be willing to waive his no-trade clause, and it sounds like the Canucks might accommodate him.
A source told ESPN.com’s Pierre Lebrun that Chicago could be on the short list of teams Luongo would be willing to be traded to.
Coincidentally, Luongo and Hawks starter Corey Crawford share the same agent in Gilles Lupien.
But does Luongo make any sense for the Blackhawks?
The answer is a resounding no.
It’s not unheard of for a rival player to become a beloved figure when he changes jerseys. Think of Dennis Rodman among others. But Luongo is a different animal. Rodman was a smaller piece to the puzzle while Luongo would immediately be in the spotlight simply because of the position he plays. He would have to win over fans with his play, just as Rodman did. But it would be very difficult.
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About 23 Intently Staring Goalies
23 Intently Staring Goalies comes from the 23 close-up photos of goalies that used to line the walls of my office.
On the good side, it kept down interruptions, but it also made sure I had to leave my trash outside my door if I wanted it picked up.
I've been watching and analyzing goaltenders for going on 40 years. Some of that was spent drawing goalies on my grade 8 math homework. Then it was taking my card decks and printouts to Indianapolis Racer games. Luckily, the Internet took off, and by 1991 I was half of the duo that would ultimately become the Plaidworks hockey mailing lists. I wrote "Handicapping the Goalies' for the San Jose Sharks mailing list, and took a lot of photos of goalies in action. I have around 5000 slides of mostly goaltenders in action from 1989 through 2001 from the WHL, IHL and NHL. Since I've gone digital, I've added about 10,000 more images to the library. During summers and when the league went dark, I was reading through multiple SF By area news papers, tracking ice hockey from the 1917 recreational leagues up through the California Seals.
We'll be talking about goalies and goaltending. We'll talk about whats going on now, who's in the system, and when the doldrums hit, I'll haul something out of the big bag of history, or something from the photo archives. We'll talk about who's hot and why, and who's not and what they can do to get back on track. We'll take a look at the trends in scouting goalies, and why a style may work for one team but not another. I'll battle with my dictation software to get it to understand Bryzgalov and Bobrovsky.
It should be interesting--hope you want to come along for the ride!