Luongo wants to be a Panther

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    Earlier today Roberto Luongo got off the ice in Florida and confirmed something many of us already suspected.

    “[The Panthers] makes sense for myself, for my career and my family,” added Luongo, who still has 10 years at $5.33 million per remaining on his deal. “That being said. There’s obvious other options as well. This is a preferred location for obvious reasons but I’m not shutting the door on other possibilities if it comes up.”

    Luongo maintains a home in Florida with his wife and two young children during the offseason and has made it  clear that he wants to be traded, particularly to Florida, after Vancouver committed some money and term to Cory Schneider.

    The Leafs, along with the Blackhawks, are also mentioned in the article as teams with goalie issues. The piece also makes sure to note that Dale Tallon has repeatedly stated he’s “content” with his current goalie trio of Jose Theodore, Scott Clemmensen and Jacob Markstrom. That said, Tallon hasn’t ruled out acquiring Luongo if the price is right.

    From an outside view it appears that the Panthers are  wrestling with the question of whether or not it makes sense to acquire Luongo and his contract with Markstrom very close to being NHL ready. Clearly, if they want to acquire him, it’s going to get done because Luongo wants to be there; they aren’t in the same conference as Vancouver, and Florida has the assets and cap room to pull off a good deal for both sides.

    What we don’t know is whether or not Tallon is willing to part with the pieces that the Canucks would likely demand.

    As for the Leafs, Luongo represents a considerable and immediate upgrade on what they currently have in goal. He’s sort of been the “ace” in the card deck that could drastically change the Leafs fortunes heading into next season. The Leafs would appear to be a fall-back front runner should Florida pass on Luongo, but as of right now it looks like the Leafs are waiting to see what Tallon does first.

    Anthony Petrielli has been at MLHS since 2011. He is known for his weekly "Leafs Notebook" feature, and also writes specific analysis pieces. You can contact him at [email protected] or find him on Twitter at @APetrielli.