It has been a bad few days for the New York Rangers. Just a couple of days after the Rangers got bounced from the Eastern Conference semifinals, losing Game 5 to the Bruins, it seems that their team MVP goaltender Henrik Lundqvist doesn’t seem too sure he wants to return with the Blueshirts.
When asked if he would be open to a discussion on extending his contract with the team, which will expire after the 2013-14 season, Lundqvist said: “I’m gonna talk to my agent, and we’ll see.” Doesn’t sound too promising for the Blueshirts and their fans.
Lundqvist, who is considered the backbone of the team, may be discouraged with the future he sees with the Rangers, but it may be too soon to read any further into what he said—Lundqvist may still be bitter about a disappointing second-round postseason elimination. “It is a step back. We were in the Eastern Conference finals last year; we had high expectations on ourselves this year. It didn’t go our way, so yeah, it is a step back. It’s tough to make it. You just can’t expect it to happen,” said Lundqvist.
There’s no question the Rangers still want to keep the 31-year old around, who is reigning Vezina Trophy winner, but at what cost? Obviously, Lundqvist is a vital to the Rangers success, but the goaltender knows his value and he has earned his right to weigh his options. He has been with the team since getting drafted by them 205th overall in the seventh round in 2000, but he may be looking to move on—perhaps somewhere he feels he has the best chance to win the Stanley Cup trophy.
In this past shortened regular season, Lundqvist posted a 24-16-3 record in 43 starts, with a .926 save percentage and a 2.05 goals against average, including a 10-3-1 record in the month of April to carry the Rangers into the playoffs.