NHL Rumors: Chicago Blackhawks Emerge Again As Roberto Luongo Suitor

By Randy Holt

Just when you thought you were out of the woods with that Roberto Luongo to the Chicago Blackhawks business, the rumor mill turned right back around and started churning again.

The Vancouver Canucks have been rumored to been want Luongo out of town since they were eliminated from the playoffs, mostly thanks to the emergence of Cory Schneider, who looks to be the Canucks’ new franchise goaltender. And with so many years remaining on Luongo’s contract, it figured to be tough to find a taker.

The most likely suitor the entire offseason has been the Toronto Maple Leafs. They want star power and they want a goaltender, and Luongo would offer both. Most have assumed that he’s going to be a Leaf at this point, but not so fast.

Word around town has the Chicago Blackhawks as one of the two franchises making a push, or at least inquiring as to what it’d take, for Luongo. The other team is the Florida Panthers, where Luongo had some of his best years before heading up to Vancouver.

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It remains to be seen if the Hawks are actually making a push for Luongo, but there was apparently some talk at the draft. Toronto and Florida still make more sense, but the Chicago thing is an intriguing scenario.

Given Luongo’s history against the Blackhawks, having struggled so much in the postseason against them, most fans would scoff at the idea of Luongo in a Hawks’ sweater. But would it really be that terrible of an addition? Nope. If it weren’t for the absurd amount of years remaining on his contract, I could see quite a few people endorsing a deal for the embattled goaltender.

Luongo would be an upgrade from Corey Crawford, even if he bounces back from a sophomore slump. Despite his struggles in the playoffs, he’s still a world class goaltender. It would be interesting, though, to see how the fans at the United Center would handle seeing Luongo between the pipes.

We still don’t know if the Hawks actually are interested in bringing Luongo aboard, even if they’re able to make the money work. But since isn’t the first time we’ve heard these rumors this summer, it wouldn’t be a big surprise if they are.

I still think the Maple Leafs and Panthers are more likely possibilities, and maybe better fits, for ol’ Bobby Lu, but keep an eye on Stan Bowman and the Blackhawks.

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