Hockey hall: a great opportunity for Roberto Luongo to “put the finishing touches”.

Montreal goaltender Roberto Luongo received the highest honor on Monday when it was announced that his name would be added to those of other hockey immortals.

Notably like his former teammates Henrik and Daniel Sedin, Luongo will be inducted into his sport’s Hall of Fame in the 2022 class after playing a total of 1,044 games in the NHL and three appearances at the Winter Olympics with Team Canada, during the 2006, 2010 editions and 2014 of the competition.

In 2011, Luongo succumbed to a tiny victory in the Stanley Cup, which ultimately went to the Boston Bruins that year.

On Monday, he became only the fourth goalkeeper in the last two decades, after Patrick Roy, Ed Belfour and Martin Brodeur, to be approved in his first year of eligibility.

“I want to thank the committee for my selection. “It’s really an incredible feeling that lives in me,” he said right at the beginning, “it seems surreal to me when I see the many congratulations sent by SMS. It’s an honor I don’t take lightly and it’s made all the better by the fact that I’ll be competing with two of my favorite teammates of all time and two great people in Henrik and Daniel. »

“A lot of people helped me start at the very beginning of this adventure in professional hockey,” he said. I think of my teammates, my coaches, the three organizations I’ve played for. Throughout my career, I’ve been honored to be able to play hockey for so long. It’s a great way to add the finishing touches. »

Longevity as impressive as Luongo’s on the Bettman circuit cannot be due to chance alone.

To date, he has the fourth-most wins (489) in league history and is ninth in shutouts (77).

“As a goalkeeper, you have to know how to adapt. Every year the players in this position continue to improve. New techniques are presented to improve their effectiveness. I think that’s what helped me stay in the NHL for so long. I never stuck to what I knew. I had a constant need to improve myself every day. I was open to the idea of ​​incorporating new approaches. It allowed me to follow the parade instead of being stuck in my own beliefs,” said Luongo, who is now 43.

Although he was born in Montreal and is at home in Florida, Luongo admitted that the city of Vancouver has an unparalleled cachet in his eyes, having attained tremendous popularity during his years with the Canucks.

“Every time I return there, it warms my heart to find this city I loved so much. I was there for a game between the Panthers and the Canucks earlier this year and the reception there was magical. Of course there were slightly more difficult moments with the team during my stay in Vancouver, but I loved my experience. It’s a big city for sports and hockey. It’s good to see the team going in the right direction as they will always have a special place in my heart. »

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