In what must be the most shocking news for any Canucks fan this season, especially so close to the playoff drive, Roberto Luongo has tested positive for the banned stimulant heptaminol.
As reported on nhl.com, it appears that the league tested Luongo after the last night’s game against the Minnesota Wild as part of the NHL/NHLPA Performance-Enhancing Substances Program. Although there has been no comment on why the test was performed, it can be safely assumed that it was one of the “no notice” tests as discussed on the NHLPA’s website. As a result of the positive test, Luongo has been suspended indefinitely until the League receives the results of a second test.
As a fan, I am thoroughly shocked. My best guess is that his positive test is somehow related to something involved in his quick bounce back from the groin injury suffered earlier in the season, although I’m no expert in the field whatsoever. That being said, I’m completely disheartened and dismayed to hear this news. The Canucks have been on a tear as of late, finding themselves on top of the Northwest Division and having the necessary momentum needed to succeed in the post-season. Although not to be counted out by any means, having LaBarbera in the net will not strike fear in any forwards heart and therefore the Canucks have a long and windy road ahead of them.
Update: Although I’m hoping that no one read this post and then headed straight for the Lion’s Gate Bridge, I find it funny that a number were actually finding this post by either searching “Luongo Suspended” or “Luongo Drive By.” Go figure – but did you hear that Pavel Bure signed with the Canucks? I swear it’s true because I heard it on the Team 1040! 😉