Vancouver Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo will be competing in the World Series of Poker in Las Vegas next week, thanks to a $10,000 entry fee paid for by the B.C. Lottery Corp.
But on Friday, in an entertaining and candid interview with "The Jeff O'Neil Show" on 993 The Fox in Vancouver (listen here), he showed his cards on his future in Vancouver and the NHL.
Here's a partial transcript on the major points, including whether he'd play for either the Chicago Blackhawks or Florida Panthers:
If there is any "chance in hell" he'll be in a Canucks jersey this fall?
"I would never say never. You never know. But I think we all know what's going on. We've all seen what's developed. At the end of the day, I think it's time to move on. And I'm OK with that. I had a great six years in Vancouver. It's a really wonderful city. I really enjoyed my time there. Unfortunately, I was not able to bring a Stanley Cup there. Probably my biggest regret. But it'll be remembered for six great years."
Did anyone call Luongo before the Canucks signed Cory Schneider to a three-year deal?
"Nobody called me, but I think that was to be expected. We've all seen what he's done in Vancouver the last couple of years. He's a tremendous talent. The main thing that I like about him is that he's a got a great head on his shoulders. He's a player that's going to be able to handle the job and handle the market with that pressure. He's going to be a star in this league, there's no question about that, and he's going to probably win a few Vezinas. "
On whether he's limited his trade destinations with GM Mike Gillis via his no-trade clause:
"We never really had that discussion. Mike kinda threw it out there when we had our meeting at the end of the year and we never really discussed teams. Now he's trying to do his thing."
Could he come back and say he wants to stay in Vancouver?
"It's within my rights, but I think it's really time to move on. I don't think either one of us … either I demanded a trade or Mike suggested a trade. It was a mutual understanding that it was time for Cory to take over."
On whether he'd go to Columbus or Chicago:
[Laughs] "I'd rather not talk specific right now. I mean, there's a lot of stuff going on … I've always said I like playing in Chicago."
No, seriously, would he play for Blackhawks?
"That's a good question. I think there's a lot of cities that are great to play in, and Chicago's definitely one of them. But you have to realize that it works both ways. There's not only me involved in this decisions. It's also a question if the Blackhawks would be interested, if the team would be interested in trading me there and if I wanted to go there."
Could he deal with 'Chelsea Dagger' in Chicago?
"I like that song. It's catchy. I heard it seven times in one game."
Does he see himself in a Florida jersey?
"It's tough to say. Mike Gillis is obviously in charge of the negotiations and making a trade. Florida is definitely one of the spots I'd be willing to go to."
On playing in a city like Vancouver vs. playing in a place like Sunrise, Fla.
"I think playing in a hockey market is great. My preference for sure. Sometimes, playing in a place like Florida, the anonymity is nice. To go somewhere, maybe have a dinner with your family and able to relax and stuff. When you're on the ice, you want to be playing in a building that's rocking. That's sold out. The fans are passionate about their team. That's what you want as a hockey player."
About his Twitter feed:
"That's a great question. You know, I've heard a lot about this Strombone1, the last little while. I think he's really funny. I don't particularly tweet that much."
Does he pee in the shower?
"That is a great question. I've had that issue with a lot of the boys in the locker room this year. I'm not a big fan of peeing in the shower, because it splashes around. And why would I pee in my own shower?"