Schneider ready to be top goalie

Associated Press  |  Last updated January 14, 2013
Cory Schneider has waited much longer than a 113-day lockout for this chance. For the first time in his pro career, the goaltender entered a Vancouver Canucks training camp as the go-to guy in goal, a role he has coveted since he entered the organization. ''It's the culmination of my development,'' the 26-year-old Schneider said Sunday. ''This is where I need to be at my best. All this training - it's about eight years now since I've been drafted - it's all coming to fruition. ''Hopefully, it will all turn out the way I hope it will, and everything I've done to prepare for this moment will be worth it.'' Schneider displaced Roberto Luongo as Vancouver's starter in training camp last year and is slotted for permanent No. 1 duty. Luongo, who said after the season that he would waive his no-trade clause, is attending camp amid an uncertain future. He is expected to be traded, with the Toronto Maple Leafs rumored to be the most likely suitors. Vancouver coach Alain Vigneault has refused to anoint a starter, but it's clear the job is Schneider's once Luongo's future is determined. Last summer, just before he was due to become a restricted free agent, Schneider signed a three-year, $12 million contract extension. ''I'm not going to change who I am or what I do because of it,'' Schneider said. ''The mentality changes a little bit, but I'm just excited to play as many games as I can. Nobody likes sitting out, nobody likes sitting on the bench, but that's been my job, and that's what I've been asked to do that last few years - and I've done it. ''I just feel it's time to make that next step, and I'm excited to do so.'' The Canucks chose Schneider, a Marblehead, Mass., native, in the first round (26th overall) of the 2004 NHL entry draft. But he spent three years at Boston College, another three years in the minors with Vancouver's former top farm team in Manitoba, with occasional call-ups to the NHL, and two more seasons as Luongo's understudy. Last season, Schneider posted a 20-8-1 record, three shutouts, a 1.96 goals-against average and .937 save percentage in 33 regular-season games. He feels like a much different goaltender than the one drafted as a teen. ''It's leaps and bounds,'' Schneider said of his development. ''I'm sure if you showed me a videotape of back then, I wouldn't even recognize the guy in the net. But that's part of the process for me. I wasn't a guy who was going to be able to step right in as an 18- or 22-year-old. Now, I'm 26, and it's time for me to make that difference.'' Schneider is vowing not to let the starter status change him as a person, or in the way he prepares. But he admitted he has made considerable adjustments to his preparation in the years leading up to now. ''It's much more mental,'' he said. ''You find out that it's 90 percent mental at this level. The other guy looks the same physically more or less. It's the guys that can prepare themselves night in, night out who make the difference. ''Watching a guy like (Luongo) do it for so long, and seeing it up close, has had a good impact on me.'' The Canucks, who have finished first overall the past two seasons, are rated as the team to beat in a 48-game schedule. The Canucks hope they can adjust to their compressed schedule as a team, and that will require Schneider adjusting to his new role quickly. ''You see cases of ... successes and failures and guys that have been thrown in right away,'' he said. ''Every guy is different. I'd like to think that I can adapt. ... I think it's been good that I've been in this organization, and everything has worked out the way it has.'' In addition to Luongo, Schneider credits Canucks goaltending coach Roland Melanson, who has adjusted his style, for putting him on the path to becoming a starting goalie. After helping the Canucks reach the seventh game of the Stanley Cup final in 2011 and keeping their playoff hopes alive briefly last spring, Schneider wants to prove himself over a longer period. ''I've had short durations of success, but I've been training to have long periods of success,'' Schneider said.
GET THE YARDBARKER APP:
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45
MORE FROM YARDBARKER

WATCH: Bubba Watson's caddie owns heckler at PGA Championship

NFL denies sending Donald Trump letter about schedule

Michael Bennett calls out NFL stars for not speaking up on social matters

Nationals make astute move in acquiring Melancon

Son of former NFL player Antonio Armstrong charged with death of parents

LIKE WHAT YOU SEE?
GET THE DAILY NEWSLETTER:

U.S. Senator “appalled” by Bettman’s stance on concussions

Team USA’s Opening Ceremony uniforms look a little treasonous

Lawyer who reps concussion lawsuit wants to speak with Bettman

Tyler Eifert says he will never play in the Pro Bowl again

Australian athletes evacuate the Olympic village after fire

Russian weightlifting team banned from Rio

Texans GM 'disappointed' in DeAndre Hopkins

Can Andre Johnson end his regression in Tennessee?

Favre opens up about painkiller addiction during career

Miami women’s basketball coach criticizes Texas A&M following slideshow

Twin Cities preparing for influx of sex trafficking during Super Bowl LII

WATCH: Bautista bat flip will be available as NHL 17 celebration

Former USMNT, current MLS forward Davies battled cancer, in remission

The definitive guide to U.S. Men's Basketball at Rio 2016

Tony Romo training camp picture leads to fat jokes, concern

Matt Cullen’s family eats cereal out of the Stanley Cup

Texas A&M suspends coaches for sexist slideshow

10 most dangerous college football defenders in 2016

NHL News
Delivered to your inbox
You'll also receive Yardbarker's daily Top 10, featuring the best sports stories from around the web. Customize your newsletter to get articles on your favorite sports and teams. And the best part? It's free!

By clicking "Sign Me Up", you have read and agreed to the Fox Sports Digital Privacy Policy and Terms of Use. You can opt out at any time. For more information, please see our Privacy Policy.
the YARDBARKER app
Get it now!
Ios_download En_app_rgb_wo_45

Dr. Phil calls out the Patriots for their cheating ways

Everything that's already gone wrong at the Rio Olympics

Amar'e Stoudemire's presence (and absence) changed the NBA

We asked Team USA: What other Olympic sport would you play?

Why Gary Bettman's CTE denial is cause for concern for NHL

WATCH: Inside the Nike SNKRS BOX in SF for Golden Air Celebration

WATCH: Five other uniforms Chris Sale should cut up

QUIZ: Name every Olympic event in which the USA has never won a gold medal

Five U.S. Olympians favored to win multiple gold medals

WATCH: What teams should join the Big 12?

Today's Best Stuff
For Publishers
Company Info
Help
Follow Yardbarker