Canucks' Luongo was 'pretty sure' he'd be a Maple Leaf

Vancouver Canucks' Goalie Roberto Luongo speaks to the media  during a press conference at Rogers...

Vancouver Canucks' Goalie Roberto Luongo speaks to the media during a press conference at Rogers Arena September 11, 2013. (Carmine Marinelli/Vancouver 24hours/QMI Agency)

MIKE ZEISBERGER, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 10:08 AM ET

VANCOUVER - As Olympic hopeful Roberto Luongo makes his bid to once again don a red-and-white maple leaf on his chest, there was a time not so long ago when he was relatively certain he'd be wearing a blue and white one, as well.

Luongo isn't too shy to admit it all these months later -- he thought he was going to be a Toronto Maple Leaf.

"I was pretty sure I was going to end up there," the personable Luongo told the Toronto Sun in an interview on Thursday. "I was pretty shocked and surprised when I didn't."

When approached by Canucks general manager Mike Gillis prior to the 2012 draft, Luongo has said in the past that he asked that a deal be worked out with Tampa Bay or Florida, teams in the state where he spends his off-seasons.

As time passed, however, there was more and more interest shown by the Leafs. So much so that, 11 months ago, Luongo decided to have some fun with all the Toronto speculation, courtesy of his alleged phantom Twitter account @strombone1.

Back on Dec. 3, a photo appeared on the account showing racks of Leafs jerseys including a blue James van Riemsdyk model. Of interest here: Hanging right beside it was one with the name 'Luongo' stitched on the back along with his familiar No. 1. The stripes on the bottom were altered, but the implication was there -- Luongo Leafs jersey.

Accompanying the picture were the words from @strombone1: "Wow this is so crazy....... You could barely fit JVR's name on the back of that jersey........"


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