Roberto Luongo will make his highly anticipated return between the pipes at Rogers Arena as the opposition for the first time since being traded back to the Florida Panthers. Will you “LU” or will you “Boo” when the Canucks former number one goal-tender hits the ice? The answer SHOULD be simple: Lu deserves respect and the fans owe him respect, so you SHOULD most definitely: “LUUUU”. Love him or hate him, Roberto Luongo will go down in history as one of the all-time best goalies to ever don a Vancouver Canucks jersey. His had endless critics during his entire tenure in Vancouver from the fans to the media but no one was a bigger critic of his time in the crease than Luongo himself. In his first presser since returning to Vancouver, he expressed disappointment in not being able to bring a cup here.
Yes there will still be the critics who say that Luongo was not good enough. Yes, it’s true that he did not win a cup here in this city but that truth will still never undo the incredible feats that he DID accomplish during his eight years as a Canuck.
- 448 games played with an overall record of: 252-137-50. Those 252 wins make him the all-time leader in franchise WINS.
- 38 shutouts.
- 6 Divisional Championships.
- 1 Jennings Trophy.
- 1 Western Conference Championship.
- Back to back President’s Trophy seasons.
- 1 Stanley Cup Final appearance that capped off an incredible playoff run that took the city on a thrilling ride to lead this team within ONE game of their first championship.
- Winning an Olympic GOLD medal in HIS house in front of the home crowd!
Many incredible moments that can never be taken away no matter how hard the critics are sure to try. Yes, he asked to leave Vancouver but can you blame the guy after the way the last 2 1/2 years of his tenure went? Trade him, they said. It felt as though the entire city had turned their back on him, always calling for the back up and quick to blame him for every fault with the team. It got to the point where it seemed even the coaches had turned their back him or lost faith in his abilities with the final straw that saw him NOT play in the Heritage Classic. That was absolutely a low point and an unfortunate way to end his eight year tenure with the team.
He gave THIS city everything he had EVERY single time he was on the ice. Roberto Luongo was and still is the epitome of a class act both on and off the ice. If you are also at the game on January 8th, then I hope you will join me in a LOUD resounding “LUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUU” when Bobby Lu steps on the ice. No matter how the game between the Canucks and the Panthers ends at final buzzer, this shall remain true: Roberto deserves our respect and he has more than earned it.
As always, until next time, nuck said.