It's finally over. After three years of dragging goaltender Roberto Luongo on regarding his future, the Vancouver Canucks' goaltending controversy ends with a trade. Eddie Lack has a new partner in young goaltender Jacob Markstrom, and Luongo is heading back where he put up some outstanding numbers: the Florida Panthers.
Luongo and his huge contract are now property of the Panthers in exchange for Markstrom and Shawn Matthias – and 15% of his salary stays behind. The huge albatross of a salary, that Luongo bemoaned as sucking – and that he seriously contemplated voiding – was trade prohibitive beyond nearly everyone's wildest imaginations.
That contract doesn't excuse the fact that this process has gone on for years. That Luongo has been jerked around by a franchise and most recently a new head coach. It was unclear this season, despite every reassurance that Luongo was the Canucks' starter, who the number one goaltender even was.
For a player with that much experience, and for a goaltender who led his team to the Stanley Cup Finals, it was inexcusable. The Vancouver Canucks have been nothing but unprofessional in how they treated Luongo. It's good to see that they finally decided to do the right thing. Better late than never.