Toronto Maple Leafs: Examining Brian Burke’s Roberto Luongo trade story

Roberto Luongo Vancouver Canucks Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images)
Roberto Luongo Vancouver Canucks Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Abelimages/Getty Images) /
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Mitch Marner William Nylander Toronto Maple Leafs (Photo by Claus Andersen/Getty Images) /

4) Final analysis

It is clear to see Burke made the right decision in not acquiring Luongo under the terms of the package being demanded by the Canucks. Losing Gardiner and Kadri essentially along with Nylander and Marner is quite simply not an option (albeit having the benefit of hindsight when considering the latter two players).

As already mentioned, even if Burke managed to negotiate a better deal, it still wouldn’t have compared to what the Leaf gave up for Bernier. Further, at the time Bernier was considered an excellent and promising acquisition; well worth the risk when considering what Toronto sent to Los Angeles.

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Where it gets a little less clear and more intriguing, is when considering what the Canucks eventually did receive for Luongo. He returned to the Florida Panthers just before the NHL trade deadline in March 2014.

Luongo went to Florida along with prospect Steven Anthony, in return for Jacob Markstrom and Shawn Matthias. In addition, the Canucks even retained part of Luongo’s salary.

Under similar circumstances, it would have made much more sense for the Leafs to trade for the six-time NHL All-Star. However this would have required patience in waiting for this potential scenario to appear, something which Burke did not have the luxury of.

Of course, even acquiring Luongo at this stage would have had a butterfly effect on the Leafs, especially if he did improve the team. For example, they more than likely wouldn’t have been in a position to pick Auston Matthews in the 2016 draft.

Overall, when taking everything into account and the different potential scenarios, not trading for Luongo was probably a good thing. An interesting conclusion when considering his place as one of the best goaltenders in NHL history.

Next. 5 Leafs what if scenarios for the 2019-20 season. dark

What’s your take on the potential Luongo trade scenario? Would you have liked the Toronto Maple Leafs to go all-in for him, or were you glad they didn’t? Share your thoughts in the comments section below.