The trade deadline has come and gone, and Roberto Luongo is still a member of the Vancouver Canucks.
Multiple reports indicate the 33-year-old goalie was not traded despite the efforts of general manager Mike Gillis, who has remained adamant all along that Luongo would not be dealt away on the cheap.
“From an efficiency standpoint, to have $9.33 million invested in two goaltenders when only one of them can play is clearly not the most efficient use of resources,” assistant GM Laurence Gilman said recently. “That being said … Roberto is still in the prime of his career and can stabilize a NHL team for years to come. That’s an asset that’s extremely hard to come by. It would be foolish for us to trade Roberto for a rental player.”
Barring injury, Luongo will be on the bench as Cory Schneider’s backup when the playoffs start at the end of the month.
Expect Gillis to receive a good deal of criticism for failing to move the veteran goalie. The pressure to deal Luongo after the playoffs, most likely at the draft, will only intensify with next year’s salary cap coming down significantly.