The Vancouver Canucks want a nice return package to trade veteran goaltender Roberto Luongo.
The Toronto Maple Leafs and Florida Panthers figure they shouldn’t have to give up much, since they would be taking on Luongo’s lifetime deal and giving the Canucks ample salary cap relief in the exchange.
If Vancouver used the newfound cap space wisely, then the deal would be a good one – even if they didn’t get a lot back in the actual trade. And if the Canucks hang onto Luongo too long, the franchise risks losing emerging netminding star Cory Schneider to a hostile free agent offer.
That is the dynamic at play. This is basically a game of chicken.
And if Toronto decided to move on from this expensive project, that would leave just one team interested in Luongo.
That would really leave the Canucks in a jam. Vancouver GM Mike Gillis must be careful not to overplay his hand