NHL Morning Rumor Mill – Tuesday, February 5, 2013.

The latest on Roberto Luongo and Jonathan Bernier.

Capitals can't afford Luongo.

Capitals can’t afford Luongo.

VANCOUVER SUN: Brad Ziemer reports Cory Schneider’s agent is hoping a trade of Roberto Luongo comes sooner, rather than later. Mike Liut hopes for a resolution soon, but acknowledged the possibility Luongo might not be dealt this season. He also understands the Canucks need to give Luongo some games if they’re to highlight him for a trade, but is surprised by how many he’s had so far. Liut also praised Schneider for how well he’s handled this situation.

VANCOUVER PROVINCE: Ben Kuzma noted the Florida Panthers, Luongo’s preferred trade destination, has struggled early this season, especially their goalie tandem of Jose Theodore and Scott Clemmensen. Kuzma also pointed out Luongo’s strong performance has swung the pendulum in favor of GM Mike Gillis.

THE GLOBE AND MAIL: David Shoalts report Washington Capitals GM George McPhee denied he had any talks with the Canucks regarding a goaltender. “We have not had one conversation about goaltending,” he said of Gillis. “And on TV they’re talking about what prospect I’m going to give up. Well, I could never take [Luongo’s] contract.”

TSN’S Bob McKenzie reported the following yesterday via Twitter: “Oh, yeah, for conspiracy theorists, WSH isn’t talking to VAN, has no plans to talk to VAN on any goalie. BTW, VAN isn’t trading Schneider.”

SPECTOR’S NOTE: So much for the speculation of Roberto Luongo being dealt to the Capitals. As for the Panthers, their lack of scoring during their recent losing skid was their biggest problem. Yes, Theodore and Clemmensen struggled, but adding Luongo wouldn’t have bolstered their offense. The Panthers have since won two straight, and if they continue to improve they won’t have any reason to trade for a goalie.

EDMONTON JOURNAL: Jim Matheson responded to a reader’s question regarding the possibility of the Oilers acquiring Jonathan Bernier from the LA Kings. Matheson doubts that could happen, suggesting the Toronto Maple Leafs stand a better chance of landing Bernier, though it appears the Kings aren’t in any hurry to move him.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: No surprise there. Unless the Kings are out of the playoff race by the trade deadline, the earliest I see them shopping Bernier is this summer, when he’ll be a restricted free agent.

40 Comments

  1. Lyle exactly right on Panthers. With many out of line-up Panthers struggled but as they get healthy the team does better. No one can fault Theodore for any of the losses he actually played well and at times prevented the scores from being much more lopsided. With Versteeg, Weiss, Goc, Weaver back they have played much better and soon with Erik Gudbranson making his first start of the year the team will get back on track. Goaltending is not a need for Panthers as even Jacob Markström has played well in AHL.

  2. Bernier

    Not sure if anyone watched or had seen the LA KOngs game a week ago where Quick was pulled after 2 goals and Bernier was in for 5 ….there is too much hype on this guy and scouting reparts last year peged him a back up with possiblke potential bt not there for a #1 goalie ….he has been in the league for almost 5 years and less than 50 games …hes not a franchise savior ……as for Edmonton …Dubnyk has been un real ….this guy has been stopping between 35 and 40 shots a game …………..every game !!!
    Edmonton needs a couple of forwards with size ………….and some strong defensive players.
    Dion Phaneuf is from Edmonton …and will be in his last year of his contract next year …this could be a great opporunity for the Leafs to make a solid deal here if Edmonton was a taker in a deal and there is a deal that could be had !!

    LIUT & Schnieder
    Take a page out of Luongos book and have some class …..Schnieder got out played that simple !!!!

    ” as the old saying goes in the NHL….. your only as good as your last game”

    Wait your turn and be quiet !! The last thing Schneider needs is to have preasure on him from his agents stupidness ….what if Scheider struggles again and plays bad …what is Liut going to say then …that its all Luongos fault …Liut should know better being a former goalie that its better to keep your mouth shut!!!

    Now Schnieder is on the hot seat even more than he was !!

    • Regarding Schnieder and Liut, well said Backchecking, Liut needs to keep his mouth shut. In the games that Roberto has played so far this year he has played well, whereas Schniender looks jittery and almost out of place. Vancouver simply wants to win games (like any other team, duh) and if Lu is the goalie to help them get the wins then that’s what its going to take. I honestly feel that it was a huge mistake to give Schnieder the #1 spot so quickly, a smart move would have been to simply have both as your #1 and rotate starts based on performance from their last game played. Giving Schnieder that much pressure out the gate and with a short season it is defiantly was not the best descion made in Vancouver, I have no doubt Schneider will be a bonafide #1, but a short season is not the time to do it IMO. My prediction is that with LU playing well, he wont be leaving until the offseason.

      • I think Liut is just hoping for a resolution. I don’t think he means ill for any player nor the team.

  3. Well said Lyle and ‘bubba.

    Yeah, the goaltending hasn’t been stellar, but it hasn’t been the fault for the losses. This team looks a lot different with Versteeg, Weiss, and Goc back in the line-up. Hopefully Bergenheim will come back soon as well as he was a factor last season.

    Shore is making a big impression. He’s been unlucky with scoring goals, but his faceoff ability is fantastic and has found good chem with Mueller and Huberdeau.

  4. I do not understand why Bernier keeps coming up for a trade to the Leafs. The reason he wants out of LA is so he can be a number one goalie. He is more unproven as Reimer, having played 34 games with an NHL team versus Reimers 76 games. David Nonis claims he is only interested in trading for a goalie if it is an upgrade. If he wants an upgrade on Scrivens, perhaps Bernier is the guy. But if he wants an upgrade on Reimer, Bernier is clearly not. Luongo is. Reimer has emerged as the number one goalie, until someone better is available. So far that appears to Luongo, and Luongo only.

    Would love to have been a fly on the wall in Gillis office when he heard the comments from Schneiders agent.

    So if Gillis was not in Washington to see Luongo, What the heck was he doing watching a team that he will not play this season, who at the rate they are going will not make the playoffs, let alone end up in the Stanley Cup Finals, assuming Vancouver does?

    • Could be something else in the works. Maybe Washington wants to shore up its defence? Or maybe Vancouver’s willing to set up a trade now for when Kesler gets back (he practiced with the team the other day and is cleared for contact, although it sounds like it may be awhile longer before he returns)? I could see the Canucks parting with Raymond for the right piece, as I don’t see where he fits in when Kesler and Booth come back.

      Or maybe Gillis was scouting the Pens?

  5. 3 3 5 7 3 4 4 1 <– goals the Panthers are letting in.

    Turn those into 3s, 2s, and 1s and then start talking offense.

    • Downfall even to most good gms always comes down to goaltending. Meanwhile, bad gms are going to look “all right” with good goaltending. It’s about 25% of your regular season success about about 40% of your playoff success.

      Luongo’s top 5 in regular season goaltending and will pull a mediocre team into the playoffs. “We don’t want to take on that contract” anyone says… especially Burke, who lived and died in Vancouver by Dan Cloutier. Well fine then, but then you’re going to live and die blaming offense and defense for the fact that your goaltending isn’t good enough. And if Schneider is not who Vancouver thinks he is, they’ll stop winning president’s trophies.

      Goaltending was the Lightning’s achilles heel last year, and lo and behold, he addresses it by getting Fe Fi Fo Lindback, now TB have a comfortable record.

      If your team lets in a crap goal, your offense gets defused. That’s why teams build goaltending, then defense, then offense.

  6. For those who didn’t see the Kings vs. Ducks game where Bernier relieved Quick, Bernier’s jock is still hanging in the rafters at Honda Ponda.

    Bernier has the potential to be a starter and potentially a franchise goalie, but he needs playing time. I also don’t understand these reports that the Kings are going to hold on to him as he’s a good backup. He is not a good backup! He’s not proven! A good backup is a guy that has NHL experience and that you know you can bring in and he’ll play well. Giguere is a good backup. Martin Biron is a good backup. Ray Emery is a good backup.

    Bernier is not a backup. He’s a prospect with a lot of upside. He’s at an age where he’s come into his own and deserves a shot at being a number 1.

    • Yep, Bernier is encountering the Catch-22 most of us do at some point in our working life: you can’t get the job without experience, and you gain experience without having the job!

      He needs a team to take a risk on him while he’s unproven (unlikely), or some serious playing time due to a Quick injury. Anyone have Tonya Harding’s phone number?

  7. It’s all nonsense, this whole Luongo thing.

    1. Luongo isn’t “suddenly” a good goalie again this year, as some fans say. He was a great goalie last year, too. However, his playoff performances are generally shocking. That – and not Lu’s contract, and not his regular season stats – are why Schneider will be “the guy”, regardless of who is playing now.

    2. I get what you’re saying, MJR I, but I don’t think the Canucks care about the President’s Trophy anymore – they want a chance at playoff success more than anything, and Luongo has shown he’s not that guy. The team has the offence to get them a top 4 slot, even if Schneider is only a “pretty good” goalie. However, Luongo actually played pretty poorly, as I recall, when he won Olympic gold. His big pressure games are bad more often than good. Canucks can’t rely on him when it counts anymore. Again, no chance it’s Schneider who gets traded. (and MJR I, I know you weren’t suggesting Schneids was on the block, only noting that I think goaltending is #2 on the list of importance – ability to win in the playoffs is #1.)

    3. I’m sure Gills doesn’t give the tiniest crap what Schneider’s agent says. Schneider will be the clear #1 in Van soon enough, as per Point #2 above. Unless Schneider demands a trade – he won’t – nothing for him to do but wait until Gillis can find a deal he likes for Luongo. It’s not like Gillis wants to be carrying $10M in goalie salaries, either!

    • My comment was based on teams not being in the running for Luongo and sticking to mediocre goaltending (ahem Toronto, Florida, Chicago).

      As for whether Luongo can win the cup… he got to game 15, what’s the 16th? He just won’t steal one but he’s capable of winning one (Osgood, Niemi good examples). Bonus… since he’s so good in the regular season, he helps a team get to a good position so that they play slightly easier teams. I could think of 17 teams in my head who would improve their goaltending if they picked him up. Some HAD good netminders but they’re not doing it anymore. Luongo’s got at least 5 years left as a starter.

      • All fair points! And yes, if I’m half the teams in the league (or more), I’d LOVE to have Lu.

      • You mean he did steal the 3 wins vs Boston? 2 Shut-outs and one double OT win where he let in one goal?

  8. I bet Gillis does give a crap about Schneiders agent, because Gillis does not need any “inside pressure” to move Luongo before he is ready. Luongo has played well which maintains or increases his perceived value to Gillis. Having a sucky goalie or agent pushing to get him out the door when you are supposedly “in no hurry” is another distraction / situation they do not need. I am enjoying the side show but hope it ends soon.

  9. Oh, and in the wake of Smith, White and Colaiacovo all being injured, I’m still dreaming my Habs offload Kaberle to the Wings to run their power play, in exchange for an 8th-rounder. The Wings can then opt to buy him out in the off-season, if it’s a failed experiment.

    Not that there’s any report Detroit wants him, I just like to dream.

  10. Why would Edmonton want Bernie? With the play of Dubnyk so far, he has proven he can handle the number on goalie duties. Also wasn’t it Dubnyk who took over the number one goalie spot on the Canadian Spangler Cup team from Bernie? The Oilers are only a Suter type defencemen away from being a top contender.

  11. @Backchecking

    We are missing your Leaf comments on Canadian corner

  12. First and foremost it is all about the team. They are winning with Luongo right now and the coach, every coach, likes to keep riding their hot goaltender and no doubt about it right now Luongo is hot. Liut should shut his mouth and be happy with the contract money he got his client (which Liut gets a percentage of) and do his best to keep the Canuck dressing room a happy place.
    Gillis doesn’t need Liut to tell him that Schneider wants to play. Every player on the team wants more ice time and goalies are no different. When Schneider gets to play Luongo will wish it was him in net, that’s just what competitive NHLers do.
    The Canucks are in a great place with two very good goalies, who both want to play and the team is winning more than it is losing. Quite a few teams wish they had Vancouver’s netminding problems.

    During the game when the cameras showed Gillis and his assistant at the Penguins/Capitals game it was the ever babbling Pierre MacGuire that gossiped about where there’s smoke there’s fire. He had no idea why Gillis was there and was just flapping his gums and that caused the hockey world to start speculating that something was in the wind. Many GM’s attend other teams games to have a look at certain players and just because they are window shopping doesn’t mean they are buying.

  13. WE all all ready knew Luongo was a world class Goalie so whats all the HUB BUB !!

    I think its about time that LUongo get some credit while he’s in teh spotlightin the the Hockey world ……hes only been playing this way since he entered the NHL ….it only because he hasn’t won that elusive BIG GAME yet!!

    Hes carried every team hes been on during a regualr season run …last year & this year is no different …not sure why everyone is so surprised about his play ….hes been the second best goalie over tha past decade we allready knoew that ….its just our sourness to hate on him ….its like the Phil Kessel disease we have to poke at the fact he just can’t get over the hump to be that type of eleite player we all expect ……somtimes consistancy is better tha being a one hit wander ….it leaves a better legacy of your work behind ……there are a heck of a lot of teh worlds best players that never won a Stanley Cup …however we all look at those superstars as world class and possiblely some of the best to ever play the game ….to not win a Cup is not a good judgement for a quality body of work when you dominant fopr more than 10 years as the worlds best in that position …..ypou can only do so much as an individual on a team game !!!!

  14. @ Back checking

    Why would Edmonton want Phaneuf? He is one of the worst +- in the league. 0 goals 1 assist and 2 pim. I will give you Horcoff for him and hopes he resigns at 2 mill or less.

    • Nice name. I agree completely about dion not being a fit at all in Edmonton. They need mobile defense, not that pylon!

      • Why would anyone want Phanuef, he has to be one of the most selfish players in the league and thats how he plays.

    • Best name ever!
      I mean, best…….. name……………….. ever.

  15. HI Lyle …

    I love talknig Hockey with real people who are fans and have the utmost respect for …..ALL…. other posters not just me …obviously it is hartd to deter people from being idiots !!
    This is what happens when you let the RATS RUN THE SHIP …IMO ….
    Last I checked this was a forum tp put forth ideas and share possibilities of what may or may not happen around the league …based on our our views and team needs and requirements …unfortunately I don’t have the users name here to give my rebutle or user ID to know who such a person is ….but its quite disturbing when people are allowed to simply out right disrepectful to your followers and the people who like to be FAIR AND OPEN MINDED TO ALL HOCKEY TOPICS …………………….As far as I know all the guys on this iste are good guys ( girls maybe) …..dont be a rotten apple!!!

    IF YOU CAN’T BE A GROWN UP ….please go wacth TMZ and blog about the Kardashians LOOSER !!!

    ON THAT NOTE ….

    Oilers sat Ryan Whitney there Veteran defenseman and are seeking a lead player on the back end …some one who is Physical and a leader …THEY HAVE ENOUGFH SCORING UPFRONT they don’t need another goals scorer on th back end especially with Shultz …..Dions contract is only one more year after this half season , so you would only be on the hook for less than $3.5 this year going into a posible playoff run with a VERY YOUNG INEXPERIENCED group …Dion could provide some other intangiables to that team ….If you missed the Nonis interview last night which you obviously did….he said no players were safe and that Phaneuf still had to earn his away goimg into a contract year …it might make good sense to bring in a hometown boy who doesnt need to be a Captain and can just play a physical role with leadership which they so desperately need right now and more importantly in the playoffs !!!

    • Which way to the Kardashian blog?

      HAHA – Just screwing with you

    • It is called the internet. You are fighting a losing battle if you try to ‘fix’ it.

  16. I really don’t understand why people keep trying to link the Leafs to Bernier. Of the Leafs go after any goalie it will be somebody with experience to mentor Reimer, not another kid with even less experience than Reimer.

    Anyway, Reimer has been very good this year. Goaltending is the least of their concerns right now. What they really need is a power forward to replace Lupul or a good defenseman to play with Phaneuf.

  17. The leafs don’t need Bernier, The games Toronto has lost haven’t been Reimer’s fault, unless you count the fact that he can’t score goals. 9 Games in and he has as many goals as Kessel, enough said. I liked the comment about the Oiler maybe asking about Phaneuf, If I had my way he’d be on the first westjet Flight out of Pearson, the only twine he hits is the black stuff behind the glass, he might be effective if the NHL starts using Soccar Nets

  18. Sorry about the typo ” soccer Net” the Leafs so Give the bruins Colborne Back for the rights to Thomas, and try to convince him to come back.

  19. The oilers know dion too well to want him. He was in Calgary, constantly getting skated around when trying to line up the big hit, missing the net and well just being a bad defensemen.

    I would be very shocked if the oilers went for him. Andy sutton is a better d man…

  20. I thought Andy Sutton retired due to injury????

    I am not a huge Dion fan …but he did finish as the top 14th best D man in the NHL last year, and played almost the most minutes in the NHL.
    Not sure what else of even similar caliber player would be avilable from another team with that resume .for a non lop sided deal ………thats the key??

  21. To Backchecking

    I rarely comment on here but backchecking just calm down and relax. People disagree with you and don’t like your asinine proposals (every trade just about) or writing style sometimes but there is nothing inflammatory or inappropriate being said. Man up, grow a set and chill out. If you don’t like it, so be it. Other people don’t like things either. For example I don’t like fat chicks.

    Also I think the Oilers main problem has been a capable face off man. Horcoff can do the job, but he’s injured and although Gagner and Nuge are producing on offense, neither can get it done in the face off circle and this hurts on penalty kills and defensive zone starts. I would love Handzus but they way the Sharks are playing it would never happen. A decent third line centreman would work.

    • Agree with everything you said. The Oil could really benefit with a large, capable body up the middle. Someone that can be utilized in all situations – a Handzus/Gaustad type would likely workout to be a healthy investment.

  22. I pray Luongo does NOT go to the Maple Laffs. They have to be one of the worst franchises over the last few decades. Pathetic. Lu deserves better. He is a great goalie and team player. Luuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuu!

  23. Not sure why Toronto goes after Bernier, since he’s not really an upgrade over Reimer. Anyone that saw the ridiculous defense that passes in Toronto knows that unless acquire Superman very little will change.

  24. One of the comments on this was actually interesting. It was about Phaneuf coming to Edmonton. He still has the rest of this year and the next on a contract, so maybe next year or this year Edmonton could attempt to pry Phaneuf away from Toronto. One might think that’s next to impossible, but I think Edmonton could offer up Paajarvi in a trade, as he is still considered a player with good potential, even though I think he won’t get that much better. Maybe Paajarvi, a couple 2nd rounders, and a defenseman (Petry, Peckham, Potter, or Smid)

  25. Comments on goalies and who really needs them? NJ next year, Calgary next year until last night’s injury to Kipper, Islanders (long term), Flyers (quality backup) maybe the Caps.

    Who is available not named Luongo? Bishop – Lerner is ready for the big show, Greiss – he is an UFA so might actually be dealth this year but will be a cheap, quality addition to any of the afforementioned clubs, Bernier (RFA at year’s end) and either Florida keeper to gie Markstrom his place in the NHL.

    Deals that could work:
    Bernier to Calgary for one of their surplus D (Babychuk?). At worst he splits time with Irving and gets valauble game exposure to test his metal. Calgary can always move Kipper for some propects or picks to start the Calgary rebuild if he is not hurt that bad. I could see the Caps jumping to add him if they are in the playoff hunt allowing Holtby another year to build up.

    Greiss anywhere for picks or D depth (SJ will lose him after this year no matter what so move him this year). Flyers would love this guy as their back-up but NJ or NYI will probably land him and give him a shot at #1.

  26. I am not saying Mcphee is in talks to acquire Luongo, but even if he was, he would never admit it to the media. Even though he denied some speculation, it doesn’t mean he is isn’t lying in an attempt to hide the fact that there are trade negotiations going on. If they were going back and forth, but the deal broke down, Washington would have put their Goalies in a tough spot for nothing by saying they were looking for reinforcements between the pipes.