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Gillis will discuss captaincy with Luongo

Thursday, 09.09.2010 / 12:37 PM / 2010 Offseason News

By Mike G. Morreale - NHL.com Staff Writer

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Gillis will discuss captaincy with Luongo
Canucks General Manager Mike Gillis will have a heart-to-heart discussion with All-Star goalie Roberto Luongo next week to discuss his future as captain of the Canucks.
It appears Vancouver Canucks General Manager Mike Gillis will have a heart-to-heart chat with All-Star goalie Roberto Luongo next week to discuss his future as captain of the Canucks.

Gillis, who named Luongo the 12th captain in team history on Sept. 30, 2008, told radio station TEAM 1040 Wednesday that he's looking forward to hearing what Luongo has to say on the subject.

"I think that if he feels being captain compromised his performance (in 2009-10) or if it may have been a little much on game days, then we're going to look at it and make an evaluation," Gillis told the station. "But I think that when you look at the work ethic and discipline he brings everyday, I don't think you could ask for a better captain or a better leader."

Luongo, a two-time Vezina Trophy finalist who has averaged 67 regular-season games in four seasons in Vancouver, has suffered consecutive playoff defeats to the Chicago Blackhawks the last two seasons. He became only the seventh goalie in League history to earn the captaincy for an organization and the first since Bill Durnan captained the Montreal Candiens in 1947-48.

Gillis, who may feel Luongo could be taking on too much responsibility as captain along with the heavy workload, expects his star goalie will be open and honest during their discussion. Luongo finished 40-22-4 last season with a 2.57 goals-against average and .913 save percentage. In 12 playoff games, he went 6-6 with a 3.22 GAA and .895 save percentage.

"The thing about Roberto is it's always team first and I think if he feels the team will perform better or function better with a change, that's what he'll do That's going to take some discussion and we've had a summer of reflecting back on last season -- the success and failures."
-- Canucks General Manager Mike Gillis

"The thing about Roberto is it's always team first and I think if he feels the team will perform better or function better with a change, that's what he'll do," Gillis said. "That's going to take some discussion and we've had a summer of reflecting back on last season -- the success and failures."

Gillis re-signed backup goalie Cory Schneider to a two-year extension in June with the hope he'd see the first-year Massachusetts native see between 20-and-25 games this season.

"At the end of the day, it will be my call, but we look to people for input and get their feelings and their vision about things," Gillis added. "So we'll go through a process with him and get to the bottom of it before the season begins and we'll move on."

Gillis was asked if he was upset over the fact Luongo, 31, traveled to Florida to work out with the team's former goaltending coach, Ian Clark, instead of remaining in Vancouver to train with recently hired goaltending coach Rollie Melanson.

"Ian is a very good goalie coach, but one of the issues we had was that he wasn't here full-time, so it was an organizational decision (to release him)," Gillis said. "Roberto has also worked out for two weeks every summer with his former junior goalie coach, Francois Allaire, in Montreal, so I don't think it's an exclusive club. Anybody that he thinks can help him with his form and preparing for the season, he'll look to and I have no issues with that."

Follow Mike Morreale on Twitter at: @mike_morreale
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