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Roberto Luongo was devastated Tim Thomas got traded

Roberto Luongo Tim ThomasTim Thomas was traded to the Dallas Stars on Wednesday, meaning hockey fans are not going to get to see the drama that could have unfolded if Thomas and Roberto Luongo had to coexist as teammates. It was no secret that the two goaltenders were not fans of each other after Luongo criticized Thomas’ style of play during the 2011 Stanley Cup Finals.

Unless Luongo and Thomas somehow managed to bury the hatchet and become best friends over the last 24 hours, the tweet Luongo sent on Wednesday afternoon is hilarious.

As you might expect, Thomas did not seem happy when the Florida Panthers chose to acquire another goalie earlier this week — let alone one he has a history with.

Either the Panthers intended to trade Thomas all along or he forced his way out of town when Luongo came aboard. Either scenario would be perfectly conceivable.

Roberto Luongo traded to Florida Panthers, will team with Tim Thomas

Roberto Luongo Tim ThomasRoberto Luongo has been part of trade rumors surrounding the Vancouver Canucks for a few years, so it was about time the team finally dealt him. The Canucks sent Luongo back to the Florida Panthers on Tuesday — a day before the trade deadline — in exchange for Jacob Markstrom and Shawn Matthias.

Luongo was benched for backup goalie Cory Schneider in the 2011 Stanley Cup Playoffs. There was speculation that Luongo would be traded for the next couple of seasons, including 2012-2013, when Schneider was made the team’s starter. But it was Schneider who was traded in June, which made Luongo the team’s starter again. But that only lasted so long — Luongo had been benched since the Olympics — and now he is headed back to Florida.

One interesting aspect of this trade is that Luongo will now be teammates with Tim Thomas. The two had a lot of friction during the 2011 Stanley Cup finals between the Canucks and Boston Bruins.

Luongo criticized Thomas’ style of goaltending after the Canucks beat the Bruins 1-0 in Game 5 of the finals, saying he would have made the save on the puck Thomas made through (this despite him having a bad series to that point). But the Bruins won the Stanley Cup, and Thomas later said he thought Luongo mistook a compliment he gave his counterpart.

Now that the two are teammates, they will have the chance to clear everything up.

Roberto Luongo: My contract sucks, I’d scrap it now if I could

Most of the time when you hear a player complaining about their contract, that player does not feel he is being fairly compensated. That is not the case with Vancouver Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo, but he still hates the deal he has with his team.

Believe it or not, Luongo wishes he did not make so much money and that his financial future was less secure. The 33-year-old watched the NHL trade deadline come and go on Wednesday with him remaining Vancouver’s backup goalie. Luongo badly wanted out of town.

“My contract sucks — that’s what’s the problem,” he told the media Wednesday, via ESPN.com. “I’d scrap it if I could now.”

Luongo has lost his starting job to 27-year-old Cory Schneider, who is tied for seventh in the NHL with a .922 save percentage. That awful contract he is referring to has him signed through the 2022 season at an average annual salary of $5.33 million per season. That sounds like it “sucks” for the Canucks, but most of us would be willing to live with $5 million a year for the next nine years of our lives.

“I think that he was very emotional,” Canucks general manager Mike Gillis said Wednesday when asked about Luongo’s comments. “I think these days are emotional for everybody. I think he said that in a highly emotional state. I’d like to give him the opportunity to catch his breath and have a discussion with him.”

Vancouver wants to trade Luongo, but finding a partner is next to impossible given the three-time All-Star’s fall from grace. He was once considered to be one of the best goalies in hockey, but Luongo has since unraveled. He became a punchline for Boston Bruins fans during their team’s Stanley Cup run in 2011 and has not made an impact since. Being stuck sucks, but it’s hard to sympathize with someone who is stuck with $5 million a year.

Tim Thomas Thinks Roberto Luongo Took Compliment as Sarcastic Jab

Boston Bruins goalie Tim Thomas shutout the Vancouver Canucks for the second time in the Stanley Cup Finals, helping the Bruins win their first Stanley Cup since 1972. Thomas stopped 238 of the 246 shots he faced over the seven-game series, giving him an absurdly high .967 save percentage. His performance throughout the postseason earned him the Conn Smythe Trophy which is awarded to the winning team’s most valuable playoff performer. The award isn’t too surprising for anyone who’s watched Thomas play the last four years for Boston, and it sure is sweet revenge for him against Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo.

After Vancouver won Game 5 of the series 1-0, Luongo boasted that he would have made the save on the lone goal let up by Thomas. Though Thomas was bothered by the comment, he chose not to respond and instead went out and won the next two games. When the two goalies met up to shake hands at the end of the series, Thomas praised Luongo.

“I know I told him that he’s a great goalie,” Thomas recounted his exchange with Luongo to NBC after winning the series. “Somehow he must have took offense. I hadn’t said anything really positive but I hadn’t said anything negative either. Part of that was tactics.”

Luongo didn’t seem to react negatively during their lineup, but apparently he did. Maybe he thought Thomas was being sarcastic considering he had just lost two games in a row after opening his mouth. The reality is both men are excellent goaltenders and maybe Luongo has learned to keep quiet next time so as not to inspire his opponent. After all, he’s the one who looks poorly in the end.

Photo Credit: Getty Images/Bruce Bennett

Roberto Luongo Takes a Shot at Tim Thomas (Video)

Really? This guy’s serious right? I mean he kept a serious face on, so he’s either a great actor or Roberto Luongo really did take a shot at Tim Thomas after Game 5 and meant it. The Bruins lost Game 5 in Vancouver by a score of 1-0, and the only goal in the game certainly could have been stopped by Thomas. However, I’m not sure a goalie who let up 12 goals in two games is in any position to be critiquing the performance of his counterpart.  The Bruins will have to win a game in Vancouver if they want to win the Stanley Cup, but the Canucks would probably be wise to refrain from providing Boston with bulletin board material along the way.  H/T to Barstool for the video.

Cory Schneider: Roberto Luongo Deserves to Start in Goal for Game 5

The Vancouver Canucks have lost two games in a row since going up 2-0 on the Bruins in the Stanley Cup Final. Boston has not just won two in a row, they’ve spanked the Canucks outscoring them 12-1. Vancouver goalie Roberto Luongo had to be pulled towards the end of Game 4 and backup Cory Schneider replaced him once it became 4-0. The poor showing by Luongo the past two games has sparked a debate: which goalie should start Game 5 for Vancouver? Schneider says it still should be Luongo.

“I am ready for anything but I am not expecting anything one way or another. As far as I’m concerned, three lucky goals off our sticks, off our bodies, and I’m not sure what Lou (Roberto Luongo) could have done differently on most of them. So I don’t really see him at fault and he deserves to play the next game.”

Schneider supports Luongo and I’m guessing coach Alain Vigneault will too. However, if he got pulled it wouldn’t be the first time these playoffs. In the first round, the Canucks were up 3-0 in their series with the Blackhawks before being forced into a Game 7. After Vancouver was outscored 12-2 in Games 4 and 5 against Chicago, Schneider started Game 6 and lost before Luongo was put back in place for Game 7.

Blackhawks Looking to Make Roberto Luongo Cry Again

During the 2009 NHL playoffs, the Chicago Blackhawks stunned the Vancouver Canucks by beating them in game six of the Western Conference semifinals. It was enough to make a grown man cry — literally. After the 7-5 loss to the Blackhawks, Canucks goalie Roberto Luongo began to cry because he felt he had let his team down. Well, this year they are hoping to stop the waterworks and the Blackhawks in their tracks as the two teams will have a playoff rematch which starts Saturday night.

All I can say is this series is going to be awesome. You have the number two and three seed battling it out in what has become a great rivalry. Luongo isn’t looking to get embarrassed by the boys in red and white again, but the Hawks want to make the gold medal goalie cry again.  The two teams both won two games against each other in the regular season, so if that has any impact on this series the games are going to be close.

I’m sticking with my orginal Stanley Cup winner and saying the Blackhawks will take this series. As long as they don’t try to get fancy with the puck and make it on to Sportscenter’s Top 10 Plays, they can play some good old fashion hockey and get past Vancouver.

Sources:
Blackhawks vs. Canucks preview [SI.com]
Roberto Luongo gets emotional after loosing series vs Hawks [YouTube]