Roberto Luongo

Under Pressure: Roberto Luongo


Did you know that 36-year-old Roberto Luongo is now the second-oldest goalie in the NHL?

It’s true. The only one who’s older and still under contract is Minnesota’s 37-year-old Niklas Backstrom.

Luongo, of course, is very much under contract. He’s signed through 2021-22, to one of those front-loaded, back-diving deals they don’t allow anymore.

But you can forget the cap-recapture consequences for now, because Luongo is also coming off an excellent season, one in which he started 61 games for the Panthers and registered a .921 save percentage. Which is to say, he didn’t look like a guy on the verge of retirement.

Coach Gerard Gallant called Luongo “our MVP, our best player most nights.”

If Florida is to take a run at a playoff spot in 2015-16, Luongo will, in all likelihood, need to be just as good. The Panthers’ backup is Al Montoya, the 30-year-old who struggled last season (.892 SV%) and has just 88 NHL starts with four different teams to his name.

And make no mistake, the Panthers have their eyes on a playoff spot. They made a late surge last season after acquiring Jaromir Jagr, only to fall a few points short.

“We went toe-to-toe with everybody this year,” Luongo said at season’s end, per FOX Sports Florida. “The good teams, we played them well and we won some games. It’s just a matter of growing as a team, getting a bit more experience and taking the next step.

“We took a huge step this year, but we fell a little bit short. It’s really a matter of putting it all together next year.”

Video: Canucks pay tribute to Roberto Luongo

Roberto Luongo

Roberto Luongo is making his first start in Vancouver tonight since his March 2014 trade to the Florida Panthers.

During a break in play in the first period the Canucks paid tribute to Luongo, who spent eight seasons in Vancouver.

Related: Expect a lengthy ovation for Luongo tonight in Vancouver

PHT Morning Skate: Roberto Luongo shares his halloween costume

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PHT’s Morning Skate takes a look around the world of hockey to see what’s happening and what we’ll be talking about around the NHL world and beyond.

There’s never a dull moment when you follow Florida Panthers’ goaltender Roberto Luongo’s popular @Strombone1 Twitter account. On Sunday night he posted his halloween costume. In case you can’t make it out, Luongo is posting alongside a woman, who appears to be his wife Gina, in a “deer in headlights” ensemble.

This is how I feel on game days…. #happyhalloween

A photo posted by Strombone (@thestrombone1) on

Good news for fans of the movie Dumb and Dumber and Cam Neely – the Boston Bruins executive is reprising his role of Sea Bass in the upcoming sequel Dumb and Dumber To. (TSN)

Seattle has long been rumored a destination for either NHL expansion or relocation. According to a report, expansion fees for a Seattle-based team would be in the $400 million range based on the recent sales of the New York Islanders and Arizona Coyotes. (Seattle Times)

Montreal Canadiens P.K. Subban and Brendan Gallagher compete in bobbing for apples – there’s a lot of cheating going on here:

Until Sunday’s games, the NHL was enjoying a suspension-free start to the season; however, thanks to the Sharks’ John Scott, who appeared to leave the bench to start a fight Sunday night, that could be all over. As Greg Wyshynski points out, until last night, more beat writers had been suspended. (Puck Daddy)

There’s an old running joke that players in a contract year tends to produce at a higher pace than a player in the middle of a deal. Well now there’s some numbers to break it down. (The News & Observer)