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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

NY Rangers to Open Next Season in Sweden; Lundqvist's Reaction Plus Todays News


Henrik on opening next season in Sweden:

"It's going to be very exciting," said Henrik Lundqvist, who backstopped Sweden to a gold medal at the 2006 Olympics. "I heard some talks about it for the last few weeks, and to go to Sweden and play a couple of games, maybe even go to Gothenburg (for a preseason game) if that's going to happen - that's my hometown (and home of Frolunda, the team Lundqvist played for in the Swedish Elite League from 2000-05) and that would be very special."

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And From Rangers Report:

Henrik Lundqvist after todays practice:

“It’s the same feeling every year. You get anxious, nervous, excited. A lot of emotions going into the playoffs. I always put a lot of pressure on myself. But I hope I can help the team and make them feel confident and if I need to, just step up at the right time to be there for them. So we’ll see how we do.”

Is this his time of year?

”(Laughs). I like it. I liked going down the stretch the last month and a half. It’s been fun. A lot of intense games. And you just have to be on top of your game, otherwise it’s over real fast. So it would be a great feeling to have a good run. It’s been a while since we’ve had a good run in New York, so that’s what we’re working for now.”

On how he feels physically, after playing all those games since February and having had a few days off now:

“I feel pretty good. There’s no time to really … you know, if I would sit down and think, ‘Maybe I’m tired, maybe I’m not’ … but I don’t go there. There’s no time for it. And now, it’s so exciting to be in the playoffs. When you get out there tomorrow and feel the energy and excitement from the guys and the crowd, it’s not going to be hard to be ready to play.”

“Especially when you have a long run in the playoffs, if you have that—I’ve experienced it back home and a couple of years ago here—you might be tired, but when you go out there and feel the energy and excitement it’s like you can keep going forever, it feels like. Hopefully we can feed from that energy. I don’t think anybody’s tired right now and we shouldn’t be tired.”

On what he felt when the final buzzer sounded in Tampa’s win over Carolina Saturday:

“I think right after our last game, I kind of landed a little bit—‘OK, maybe it’s over, maybe it’s not.’ And then after that game, Tampa won, it’s like, ‘OK, it’s on again.’ For a few hours you’re like, ‘Maybe it’s over.’ You kind of let your shoulders down a little bit. But right after that (Tampa) game is over, I started thinking about tomorrow and about Washington and about what’s coming, what I need to do. So now it’s back to hockey 24/7 again and trying to do everything you can to get your game going.”

On sitting next to Drury as the team watched the Tampa game:

“They tried to calm me down, but it was tough. It was very tough. I’ve never been in that position before. You know, I just kept thinking about all the work we put down and what happened last year, being that close, and being that close again and just missing. It’s mentally really tough. It’s a great feeling when you realize you’re in and all the work paid off.”

“I think it was our turn, though, after what happened last year and the way we played. We should be here. We deserve to be here, and we should just grab the opportunity and try to do something good here.”

And Finally, this is probably where Henrik intensely watched the Lightning game:

Rangers like (grease) Lightning

The New York Rangers were Tampa Bay Lightning fans on Saturday night. A source at the Ainsworth tells us that practically the entire team, including Brandon Prust, Mark Staal and Steve Eminger, gathered at the Flatiron District sports bar with friends, family and fans to watch the Lightning beat the Carolina Hurricanes, 6-2. The Florida team's win ensured the Broadway Blueshirts would have a spot in the NHL playoffs. Our insider says that when Tampa finally triumphed, the fans lined up to congratulate our hometown puckheads, who were "jumping up and down" with excitement.

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