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Thursday, December 31, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Post-Game Video Interview


Sunday, December 27, 2015

Watch Henrik Lundqvist Open up his New Bauer Pads for Christmas


Wednesday, December 23, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Post-Game Video Interview


- Henrik Lundqvist, with his 355th NHL regular-season win, tied Rogie Vachon for 17th place on the NHL’s all-time list

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Reveals Why He Likes to Throw His Stick in the Crowd


Here's the results of the auction. Click to enlarge: 

Monday, December 21, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Post-Game Video Interview


Saturday, December 19, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Post-Game Video Interview


Friday, December 11, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Met With a Sports Psychologist Before this Season


VANCOUVER -- Antti Raanta was already well into his first preseason game backing up Henrik Lundqvist before the New York Rangers star spoke to him for the first time that night.

"It was first TV timeout in the first period and he just came to me at the bench and was like, 'It's nothing against you, this is just my style,'" Raanta said with a chuckle. "I think he was worried I thought I did something wrong because I was sitting back, pulling away from him."

No one would blame the Rangers new backup for being standoffish. A lot of goaltenders are given a wide berth as they slip into their own little world of visualization and warmups in the hours before a game, but Lundqvist is well known for the intensity of his pregame preparation.

"On game days he is the most intense guy I have ever seen," said Vancouver Canucks forward Daniel Sedin, who played with Lundqvist several times for Sweden in international competitions, including the past three Olympics. "I'd stay away from him. I don't know if that's a rule, but from what I've seen on national teams you tend to stay away from him."

Lundqvist doesn't have to apologize for the intensity that has made him one of, if not the NHL's top goaltender over 11 seasons, an Olympic gold medal winner in 2006 and a five-time Vezina Trophy finalist, winning the award as the League's top goalie in 2012.

Lundqvist is consciously trying to dial back his famous intensity this season, however.

"As a mindset just trying to relax a little bit more during the games, going into games," Lundqvist explained. "Over the years I have been extremely intense, and as you get older I feel like I am trying to get less intense and it is helping my game to be more aware, and I think awareness is key for my game, just be aware of all the situations more than anything."

Think of it as a broader focus, allowing a more relaxed Lundqvist to see a bigger picture rather than getting too worked up and running the risk of becoming puck focused.

"When you are really intense you tend to lock in on the puck," he said. "There are so many plays now where it's not really the first play that is going to beat you. It's that pass, it's that rebound, you get surprised. There's a lot of goals you give up because you are surprised. You didn't see that guy or didn't pick someone up. When I play my best my awareness is better, so finding that balance of being intense but at the same time finding a focus that is a little more relaxed."

That relaxed intensity has been attributed to top goalies like Carey Price of the Montreal Canadiens and Braden Holtby of the Washington Capitals because of how powerfully and precisely they play without ever looking like they get too worked up or out of control. Goaltending is a position where trying too hard can sometimes be detrimental, but walking that fine line isn't easy.

"Finding that balance is hard," Lundqvist said. "But when you do find it, it's a good feeling. You feel like you are on your toes but you feel like you have awareness of the game."

That increased awareness isn't why Lundqvist has been spotted outside the blue ice more often this season. While he hasn't abandoned the goal line-out philosophy introduced to him by Rangers goaltending coach Benoit Allaire, Lundqvist has pushed out to, and sometimes past, the edges of his crease with increasing frequency the first two months this season.

"That's just something I talked to Benny about doing more," Lundqvist told "You have to respect the shot, especially when you have traffic, and that's what I have changed a little this year, to come out a bit more. You try to adjust your game, adapt. You analyze it and see what type of goals am I giving up and adjust to that, and over the years I have been in good control a lot but I have seen a lot of goals maybe from the point and deflections, and this year that has been a lot better because I am more on top of the crease for 'D' shots."
The downside was on display in a 2-1 loss to the Vancouver Canucks on Wednesday, when Daniel Sedin redirected a slap pass from the point in from just above the goal line for the winning goal before Lundqvist, who challenged Alexander Edler as he wound up for a shot at the point, could recover back to his post.

"The downside is when they make plays like that, but that's the awareness again," Lundqvist said. "I talk with Benny about that all the time and he keeps reminding me to be aware."

If that's the tradeoff, it's worked pretty well so far. Lundqvist is 14-6-3 with a 1.99 goals-against average and leads NHL starters with a .938 save percentage.

While being near the top of the NHL goaltending statistics isn't new territory for the 33-year-old Lundqvist, getting there this early has been a challenge the past two seasons. He posted a .907 save percentage through the end of December two seasons ago and had a .911 save percentage after two months last season, ceding starts to then-backup Cam Talbot with performances well below his career average save percentage of .921.

So what else changed this season? Challenged by coach Alain Vigneault going into the summer to be better coming out of it, Lundqvist met with the Rangers sports psychologist.

"We talked about the biggest difference between the offseason and during the season and we came to the conclusion that during the season I think more about the game, I prepare more, and that's what I have to change going into training camp and get to that phase quicker," Lundqvist said. "That's what I changed and part of that is just visualizing a lot, thinking about my game, what I need to do so when I do get into game situations I just feel more prepared."

Allaire and Lundqvist altered their training camp routine to let Lundqvist prepare mentally.

"During the season you think a lot about your game and upcoming games and what to do and what not to do, so I spent more time during camp thinking like that before I started playing, and when I did start playing it felt more like I was 20 games in than just the first game," he said. "That made a big difference because technically and physically I always feel good coming into camp but the mental aspect, which is probably the most important aspect of a goalie's game, is one that you might forget sometimes."

Lundqvist hasn't forgotten it this season. Nor has he abandoned his pregame routine. It's just a little less intense now.

"I feel more relaxed this year," he said.

Monday, December 7, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Post-Game Video Interview, Breaks Another Mike Richter Record


Henrik Lundqvist earned his 302nd career win in either regulation or the five-minute overtime period with the Rangers, passing Mike Richter to become the franchise leader in wins not earned in a shootout.

Friday, December 4, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Says it's Time for the Rangers to Win the Stanley Cup


I think most people would be shocked to discover the “King of New York” is from a tiny hamlet.

[Laughs.] Yeah. But it was perfect. It was so small, and all about skiing. There are 1,500 people living there, tops, but during the wintertime a lot of people come there to ski and have a good time. I grew up with my twin brother and my sister and it was all about sports for us. My dad was a ski instructor, so we skied a lot, but hockey was always No. 1, and from an early age.

How small are we talking? Any traffic lights in Are [Lundqvist’s hometown in Sweden]?

No traffic lights.

Movie theatre?

Yes. When I lived there, they turned the high-school gym into the theatre. And it was a flat floor, so they’d pull out the folding chairs. If you had a tall guy in front of you, you were screwed. [Laughs.]

Your first exposure to a big city, was it Gothenburg? And were you shocked?

Yes, because my grandma lived close to Gothenburg, and my dad’s from Gothenburg. He took me and my brother to our first hockey game there. You come from this little town and you walk into this arena with 12,000 people — it was a lot to take in. But it was over there that it started for us, me and my brother. “Wow, we want to play for this team one day.” We were five and we became huge fans of this club, Frolunda. Eleven years later, we ended up there. I got used to the big city, the stoplights, the people, traffic.

The story of how you became a goalie is great.

I was a soccer goalie as well — for some reason, I liked that position. And my brother was always shooting pucks at me on the street, on the lake. At our first team practice, I saw this guy come out with goalie equipment and my eyes just lit up. I loved the gear. I thought it was so cool — and the gear was awful back then. The coach asked if someone wanted to be in net, and my brother raised my hand and pointed at me. We knew, you know? We finished each other’s sentences.


Twins. It was like one person, really, until we were 14. Then we started to get our own personalities. I like to go my own way a little more than he does. But that’s how it started with me in net, and I loved it right away.

I heard you guys are pretty competitive. If Joel had 10 shootout attempts on you today, how many times would he score, if any?

If any. Well, I skated with him twice this summer. I joined the team [Frolunda] back there for a couple of practices and we went head-to-head for a couple of rounds. I think he scored one on seven or eight. And I really don’t know who has the advantage. You might think that I know what he’s gonna do, but he thinks the same way — he knows what I’m gonna do. It’s fun, though, to go head-to-head against your friend or your brother, because your competition gets so much more important.

Maybe you overthink it.

I try not to. I hope he’s overthinking it. That’s my goal.

How have you been the most consistent goalie in the NHL for 10 years?

I don’t know. I put a lot of pressure on myself and I always try to take one step in the right direction. I want to improve. I’ve been lucky, because we have a team that’s been very consistent. We’ve had a game plan over the years, and it’s been good. We have good structure. I have a great goalie coach — he can see when things need to be corrected and he can push me in the right direction. That’s meant a lot to my career and my development and the way I push myself.

How has your style evolved?

I think I settled down a little bit.

Settled down in your old age? Just kidding!

[Laughs.] Yeah, well, you get smarter, you know? I’m still pretty aggressive when I play. Even though I sit back, I need to be aggressive. I play on my toes. I think it’s been about finding a better balance on and off the ice. I’m a pretty intense guy when it comes to hockey — good preparation. But I feel like the past few years I’ve been better at finding that balance of not too much, not too little. Less intense.

Goalies are always a little different. Are you?

Well, different is good, right? I think you do get exposed to a very unique situation as a goalie with all the pressure and what you’re doing out there. The way you think and act might sometimes come across as different because of the pressure you’re under. If I look at my buddies back home, I don’t see myself as very different from them.

Has New York changed you?

Yes and no. My basic view of life and the way I act — I don’t think it’s changed much. My situation has changed so much: I have two kids. You get older and your priorities change a little bit. Hopefully you get a little smarter as well. I try. You get a better understanding of the game and of people around you.

There’s a lot of talk about your looks and your style. Do your teammates razz you when you’re in Vogue or People?

They did back in the day. It’s a different time now, though. I remember coming to New York 10 years ago. It was different. The older guys didn’t really care as much as they do now about how they present themselves and their clothing. I think it’s good for the game. I think it’s good that we always travel in suits. It gives a professional look to the organization. We’re all pros, right?

You always dressed up, even as a rookie.

Maybe I took it too far sometimes. Maybe I had to relax a little bit, but that was me. I definitely had some battles with the older guys, and they were questioning my outfits my first couple of years in the league. But I kind of stayed on my course. Like I said, I like to go my own way sometimes. But it was fun.

What would it mean to win the Stanley Cup in New York?

You dream about it, you picture it happening. That’s definitely the biggest goal and dream I have right now. It’s my biggest motivation to try to get better and try to help the team win. I’ve been there for 10 years, and we’ve been close the past few years. I really hope we can take that final step now. It’s time.

Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Henrik Lundqvist Post-Game Video Interview + Notes


Henrik Lundqvist made 33 saves to earn his 352nd career NHL win. Lundqvist, who has earned all of his NHL wins as a member of the Rangers, passed Hall of Famer Terry Sawchuk for the third-most wins a goaltender has registered with one franchise in league history. The only goaltenders who have earned more career wins with one NHL franchise than Lundqvist has earned with the Rangers are Martin Brodeur (New Jersey) and Tony Esposito (Chicago). In addition, Lundqvist earned his 301st career win in either regulation or a five-minute overtime period, tying Mike Richter’s franchise record for wins not earned in a shootout. Lundqvist has made at least 30 saves in 12 of 20 appearances this season, posting a 10-1-1 record, along with a 2.07 GAA, a .942 SV%, and 2 SO. He leads the NHL in saves (605) this season.