Roberto Luongo patiently awaits trade ... or not

Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo speaks to the media during the Jake Milford Canucks Charity...

Canucks goaltender Roberto Luongo speaks to the media during the Jake Milford Canucks Charity Invitational golf tournament at Northview Golf & Country Club in Surrey, B.C., Sept. 12, 2012, (CARMINE MARINELLI/QMI Agency)

HOSEA CHEUNG, QMI Agency

, Last Updated: 6:37 PM ET

VANCOUVER - There wasn't much Roberto Luongo said Wednesday that everyone didn't already know.

The Vancouver Canucks goaltender reiterated his readiness to end his six-year stint with the team if asked. But for now, he will remain patient as long as he doesn't become a "distraction" to his Canucks teammates.

It was the same message he sent in April following the team's early elimination from the playoffs, after losing in five games to the eventual Stanley Cup champions, the Los Angeles Kings, in the first round.

Over the off-season, the 33-year-old has repeated that he's prepared to move on. Last week he told the South Florida Sun Sentinel that he prefers to return to his former team, the Florida Panthers.

But while rumours have run rampant throughout the summer, a trade has yet to materialize. And it's left everyone, including Luongo, wondering what happens next.

"It's been a little bit of the unknown for most of the summer," Luongo said before the Canucks' charity golf tournament. "I pretty much stand the same where I left off. I said I'll be willing to lift my no-trade clause in the past and so far I haven't been asked. There hasn't been much to report so far.

"Obviously, we all want to know what the future holds, but sometimes these things take longer than others."

Last season, the Montreal native posted a 31-14-8 and a 2.41 goals-against average in the regular season. But after the Canucks dropped the first two games of the opening series to the Kings -- Luongo allowed seven goals -- coach Alain Vigneault decided to start Cory Schneider in Game 3.

Vancouver also lost that game, but the team stuck with Schneider the rest of the way, paving the way for Luongo's departure. The Canucks also signed Schneider to a three-year, $12-million extension on June 28.

If both goalies are still in Vancouver when training camp opens, that's OK with Luongo.

"Two months ago, after what had happened and Schneids had just signed, I didn't see myself being here for training camp," Luongo said, adding there's no animosity between him and the club. "But you know, (I) realized once we got into August that that was a possibility and I was OK with that. Me and Schneids have a great relationship, whether it's on the ice or off the ice.

"Being back here is not the worst thing in the world."

However, keeping Luongo around may not be ideal for the Canucks, based on the goalie's $5.33 million annual salary cap hit. On Wednesday, Luongo, whose no-trade clause allows him to choose where he will go in a deal, was unwilling to talk about possible destinations.

"I've never given a list of teams," he said. "As far as that side of the business is concerned, I'm going to leave that up to (general manager Mike Gillis) to do his thing. I'm here with Vancouver and I think it's disrespectful towards my teammates and the organization to be talking about other places."

Gillis acknowledged inquiries have been made regarding Luongo, and the Canucks are listening to every team that calls. But the uncertainty with the collective bargaining agreement have added to some hesitancy in making a deal.

"A lot is predicated on what may happen down the road that's out of our control, but there has been a lot of talk and a lot of discussion," Gillis said. "When we actually have concrete opportunities, he'll be presented with them and we'll work our way through them.

"We're going to do our best to make sure that Roberto is taken care of whether he's here or somewhere else."


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