|Posted by Landon Ewaniuk on May 24, 2012 at 7:50 PM|
Speculation over where the Tampa Bay Lightning might turn for goaltending help figures to continue well into the offseason. After all, this is a club that just missed advancing to the Stanley Cup Finals in 2010-11, yet missed the playoffs entirely this season -- despite having a 60-goal scorer on the roster.
One name that continues to come up as a potential option for the Bolts is that of Roberto Luongo, but Steve Yzerman may have silenced those rumors. The Lightning GM appeared on 620 WDAE in Tampa this morning and had this to say:
"My philosophy is I'm trying to find that Hall of Fame goaltender. But good luck trying to do that, it takes time. We'll find that guy through the draft or unrestricted free agency -- that guy isn't there at this time."
That would seem to indicate Luongo and his massive contract aren't Yzerman's main target at all. Then again -- as Mike Halford of Pro Hockey Talk points out -- even if the veteran netminder is someone Yzerman is looking at, he's not going to publicly gush about how amazing he is and drive up the price.
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The HockeyFanLand Insight
No Luongo for Tampa Bay?
Roberto Luongo does carry a multiyear contract with an annual cap-hit $5,333,333 I see how this can scare off teams. Yet, I still think the Tampa Bay Lightning would be a perfect fit for Luongo. this is a player that has a history with the Florida area and not to mention he would fill a great need for the Lightning, goaltending is really this organizations only weakness and Luongo has put up some of the best regular-season numbers in recent years. Who knows what he would be capable of in a playoff situation in a less pressure filled marketplace than Vancouver.
Furthermore, the Toronto Maple Leafs, which has been rumored as the second option does not make sense because it is the center of the hockey universe. Roberto Luongo has won an Olympic gold medal . However, I believe the pressure of the media has interrupted his ability to focus in the NHL playoffs.