Still More “Luongo-to-Toronto” Chatter – October 20, 2012.

Not even an NHL lockout can kill off the rumors of Robert Luongo being traded to the Toronto Maple Leafs. Read on for the latest.

 

Despite NHL lockout, Luongo rumor mill ramps up.

VANCOUVER SUN: Canucks GM Mike Gillis recently denied a report by Sportsnet’s John Shannon claiming Gillis could be close to moving goalie Roberto Luongo to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

“The definition of ‘close’ is something that is different for everybody,” Gillis explained. “I’m not sure why John would say that because that’s certainly not the case. Everyone is entitled to speculate on whatever they’d like to speculate on. We’ve moved very slowly on any discussions with Roberto. We’ll trade him when we get what we want to get for him or we won’t trade him. Either way is fine with me.

“If we can do something that is going to help us and moves our team forward in different areas, we’re certainly going to consider it. But that hasn’t occurred yet so I’m not quite sure why that would be said.”

TORONTO STAR: Damien Cox yesterday reported no NHL team can make a trade during the NHL lockout, but that doesn’t mean teams aren’t talking trade. Cox claims a deal to send Luongo to Toronto isn’t close, “at least, not yet”. He reports its believed Gillis and Leafs GM Brian Burke spoke perhaps two weeks ago, whereby Gillis reduced the asking price he sought at the entry draft (centre Tyler Bozak, defenceman Jake Gardiner, a first-round pick and winger Matt Frattin) but still not low enough for Burke’s liking. Cox claims Bozak, however, remains the centerpiece being sought by the Canucks as part of the return for Luongo. The terms of a new CBA could also have an impact upon a potential deal.

Mark Zwolinski, meanwhile, believes Gardiner is “untouchable” and Frattin “pretty close to that”, but claims the Leafs have enough organizational depth to trade forwards and defensemen.

SPORTSNET.CA: John Shannon, citing “a reputable source”, stands by his original report claiming Luongo could land with the Maple Leafs soon after the lockout ends, claiming the deal in place is contingent upon what’s contained in the new CBA. He also said he didn’t know who would be going from Toronto to Vancouver in such a move.

SPECTOR’S NOTE: Interesting to see more Toronto-based pundits starting to chime in on Shannon’s initial report, and good to see Shannon following-up on his initial report.

To recap, Gillis and Burke are believed to have had discussions regarding Luongo, but Gillis will apparently have to lower his asking price further. If the Leafs move Bozak they risk leaving themselves thinner at center than they currently are, though there’s talk of moving left wing James van Riemsdyk to center, a position he hasn’t played in years. Still, if they want Luongo, it might take Bozak as part of the return, given the Canucks own concerns at center, especially with Ryan Kesler still recovering from off-season surgeries.Of course, as noted, the next CBA could also play a significant part in any trade.

While it doesn’t appear as though there’s a “done deal” (even Shannon seemed to back away a bit by saying the deal is contingent upon a new CBA), it does seem the possibility exists, provided Luongo is willing to waive his “no-trade” clause to go to Toronto.

 

 

14 Comments

  1. Disagree. The Leafs wouldnt be lacking at center if they moved Bozak–they have too many centres. They had Connolly and Lombardi playing the wing many times last season–and also signed McClement for their 3rd line. Even without Reims at center, they could go Connolly – Grabo – McClement – Steckel.

  2. Connolly’s injury history and decline in offensive production no longer makes him a first line center, or even a reliable second-liner. The Leafs are lacking a quality first line center, even with Bozak on the roster. Unless moving JVR pans out, moving Bozak would hurt their offense.

    • And when I say “moving JVR”, I meant moving him to center, not trading him. Just wanted to clear that up!

      • Anyone know what JVR is doing during the lockout? If he is playing/practicing at center during the lockout it would be a boost to this speculation…..

  3. A bunch of blah blah blah what will be said if this doesn’t happen what kinda rumor will be out then. More blah blah blah

  4. If this move does happen, could be the opening that Kadri may be looking for or is there another deal in the works to move him for a veteran presence? After the way the Leafs have beat the crap out of Kadri I have trouble seeing how they get any real value for him.

  5. Bozak + Franson for Lu
    Kadri + MacArthur + 1st for Getz

    Lupul-Getz-Kessel
    JVR-Grabo-Kulemin

    Solid top 6 and Goaltending

    • Sound reasonable to me. Oh wait… Why would VCR and ANA do these deals again?

  6. I still think that Lou is going to be sent to Toronto and as I said last year I would like to see Kadre and Clarke MacArthur coming back to Vancouver with maybe Mason Raymond being part of the package moving east with Raymond is very fast, possibly one of the top five fastest players on the league and would give the Leafs the added advantage of speed on the second or third line that they drastically need. MacArthur would be a solid fit in Vancouver with his hard nosed “go to the net style” which the Canucks really need and he would score twenty to thirty goals every year. Both him and Raymond have one year left before free agency and while MacArthur is a little more expensive than Raymond but with Lou’s contract gone he then could be affordable. As far as Kadre goes, I see nothing but upside if he leaves the Leafs organization, otherwise he may end up being a career American leaguer.
    I know it is all just so much hot wind but what else do we have to talk about as far as the NHL goes, other than the CBA and that is a whole other pile of steaming stuff.

  7. If a deal is to be had this seems to me to be the most likely(and remember it’s just my opinion/speculation);

    To Vancouver:

    Tyler Bozak
    Cody Franson/Nazim Kadri
    First Roud Pick

    To Toronto:

    Roberto Luongo

    If Mason Raymond is added to the mix you might see either another player like Matt Frattin coming back or an upgrade on the Cody/Kadri option to Jake Gardiner(who is thought to be untouchable). Vancouver might be able to get Gardiner if they throw in Raymond AND drop their asking price of a first rounder down to a second. That being said most deals don’t involve too many players which is why I think continuing to add in all of these extra side throw ins we all like to put in there isn’t as likely.

  8. That draft day package that cox mentioned is ridiculous. Gillis would be lucky to get two of those four assets for an older expensive goaltender that isn’t even the canuck’s starter, doesn’t want to be there, and has a very limited number of teams he’d be willing to go to. If gillis gets more than a first rounder for luongo then the other GM made a bad deal.

    • Except that Burke has pretty much no choice but to make a bad deal and try to put a good spin on it because if he does not, he WILL be fired very soon for not having done enough to improve this team. He can not do much to drastically improve the team enough to get them to the playoffs on the front end so he needs to do so on the back and although there might not be a current plethora of teams that need to have a goalie like Luongo and need him right now, Toronto does and what other options are out there for them immediately? Nothing good enough to save Burkies butt and bad deal or not, that is the reality of why Burke HAS to make this happen if he really does want to keep his job.

      While Vancouver really wants to pass the torch to Cory, the franchise is not going to fall apart if they don’t trade Luongo right away. Toronto does not have the luxury of waiting to see how things play out if Burke wants to remain employed with the Leafs much longer.

  9. I agree with Sean. Bozak is really a second line centre who has been thrown to the first because of inconsistent play by Connolly. If the season starts soon, and If Bozak is part of a deal for Luongo, Connolly or Lombardi will be given the first line centre job, or they push Van Reimsdyk into it, or either scenario until the trade deadline, when the Leafs must seriously go after someone. While I like him, Bozak is not critical, just convenient.Leafs are loaded with 2nd line centers. Same with Frattin. Wingers are much easier to replace than Centers or puck moving Defensemen. With Frasor and Ranger on the Marlies, and Holzer on the way to the big club, they can include Franson’s rights as part of a Luongo deal if need be, and he would sign there in a heartbeat (its home). As for Kadri, would love to see his creativity at centre. His problem ( watch the last few Marlies games) he is almost clueless defensively, handing over the puck frequently and needlessly. There is only room for one Phil Kessel per team.

  10. No way Vancouver gets a first for Lou and his cap crippling contract. The Leafs are Gillis only trading partner so I’d say it’s Kadri along with either (Bozak and Komisarek) or (Connolly and Franson). There has to be one salary dump (ie crap player with one year left of big salary) going back the other wayto make room for Lou (ie Connolly or Komi).