It was going to be strange to see former Rangers’ goaltender, Henrik Lundqvist suit up for the Capitals this season after 15 seasons on Broadway. However, it will be even stranger to not see him at all, and, unfortunately, that is the news coming out of the Nation’s Capitol.
The veteran netminder took social media earlier today to announce that a heart condition will sideline him for the entire season as his doctors have determined the risk “too great” to continue playing without a remedy.
Some tough news I need to share with you all.. pic.twitter.com/y7ZtAoo39Q
— Henrik Lundqvist (@hlundqvist35) December 17, 2020
It is an unfortunate turn of events as the presumptive start of the NHL season draws near. Given his age, 39 on March 2nd, even if he is ruled healthy down the line there is no guarantee that he will return. Of course, the health of “King Henrik” is of the utmost importance and the silver lining in this entire situation is that they were able to diagnose this before it got worse.
A message from Henrik: pic.twitter.com/JJDe2lKAXz
— Washington Capitals (@Capitals) December 17, 2020
Lundqvist signed with the Capitals during free agency and was beginning his first offseason with a team other than the Rangers, the team that drafted him in the 7th round of the 2000 NHL Entry Draft. The Swedish netminder took the reigns between the pipes for the Rangers during the 2005-06 season and promptly went 30-12-9 with a .922 save percentage and a 2.24 goals-against average. Over the span of 15 seasons, Lundqvist went 459-310-96 with a .918 save percentage and a 2.43 GAA. He helped lead the Rangers to 12 playoff appearances in his 15 seasons including a run to the Stanley Cup Final during the 2013-14 season, falling just short to the Blackhawks. He was a two-time All-Star and routinely in the mix for the Vezina Award, winning it during the 2011-12 season.