Can somebody remind me why I used to dislike Roberto Luongo? Did I hold some personal grudge I after he took over as Team Canada's starter when Marty Brodeur struggled during the initial stages of the 2010 Olympics? Was it some unspoken agreement we all made when he signed a contract that was over a decade long that he would have had to save everything - including all Western Canadian puppies from the pound - to live up to? Are the Vancouver Canucks such a "blah" organization that we just blamed their pedestrian reputation on the one guy we always expected more out of? Did Cory Schneider's success as his backup make him seem like he was more interested in collecting exorbitant paychecks than living up his endless potential? I'm honestly not really sure of the answer, but Roberto Luongo's Floridian resurgence as well as his increasingly self deprecating social media presence are proof positive that I was dead wrong...
So I guess it wasn't all that surprising to see him leave his crease to dap up a former teammate who had just hit a monumental milestone at his expense. Still, something about him putting his personal pride aside during the heat of competition to show respect for a close cohort's career as well as the history of game made the gesture pretty damn awesome to see nonetheless. Just one guy acknowledging another's success after being such a huge part of it for so long. The admiration that professional athletes - and more specifically hockey players - have for each other's talents isn't something you get to see on the ice everyday. Credit to Roberto Luongo for giving us all a first hand look at it by giving the guy that took over for him as captain of a once formidable Canucks squad a little recognition after having his 5-hole used and abused during the rewriting of the record books. He probably didn't even think much of it when he did it, and that says all you need to know about a guy that I owe approximately eight year's worth of good will towards.