Don't Worry About Lundqvist

10/10/13 in NHL   |   patrickhoffman3530   |   122 respect

Oct 8, 2013; San Jose, CA, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) leaves the ice after being replaced by goalie Martin Biron (not pictured) during the second period of the game against the San Jose Sharks at SAP Center at San Jose. Mandatory Credit: Ed Szczepanski-USA TODAY SportsWhen one is an NHL goaltender that has won the Vezina Trophy, been a finalist for the Vezina Trophy, Hart Trophy and Calder Trophy, won a few playoff series and has won at least 30 games in seven of his eight seasons in the league, it is expected that he is perfect every night.

This is exactly what it like to be New York Rangers' goaltender Henrik Lundqvist. Lundqvist, who has been the biggest reason why the Rangers rose from the ashes after the 2004-05 lockout season, is someone that the team and their fans have always counted on to be their best player and get the job done on a nightly basis.

With that said, however, there appears to be a weakness in Lundqvist's game and that is that he is a slow starter. The "King" usually gets his game in high gear once December arrives but for the first two months of the season, the Rangers and their fans usually see a very average Lundqvist between the pipes.

If you don't believe us, just look at the way he has played in his first three games this season. With the exception of his team's 3-1 win over the Los Angeles Kings, Lundqvist, 31, has struggled between the pipes.

In the first game of the season, Lundqvist allowed four goals in a 4-1 loss to the Phoenix Coyotes. Five nights later, Lundqvist allowed four goals in only half of the game against the San Jose Sharks and was pulled in favor of back-up Martin Biron, which did not work out so well either.

If one were to look at his stats, they would probably not believe that they belonged to the Rangers' best player. In four games, Lundqvist is 1-2 with a 3.62 GAA and a .897 save percentage, which are certainly not great numbers for perhaps the game's best goaltender right now.

With all of that said, however, there is still no reason to be alarmed when it comes Lundqvist's play. Sure, he may be off to a rough start but there are a few reasons why he will rebound and put up the kind of numbers he usually does:

Consistency
For starters, Lundqvist has been one of the league's most consistent netminders since joining the league in the 2005-06 season.

As mentioned above, he has won at least 30 games in seven of his eight seasons in the NHL. Not only that, but he has been a Vezina Trophy finalist five times, which shows just how consistent he has been in his career.

Attitude
Even though it is just the beginning of the season and there is a ton of hockey left to be played, one knows that Lundqvist is steaming on the inside because of his inconsistent play to start the season.

Lundqvist is a fierce competitor who expects nothing but the best out of himself game in and game out. Because of that, his play will more than likely improve by leaps and bounds as the season goes on.

Team Around Him
One has to remember that this is new head coach Alain Vigneault's first season with the team.

This means that the team is still adjusting to the kind of system that Vigneault wants them to play. As such, as the team adapts to Vigneault's system and gets more confident playing it, the play will be much better in front of Lundqvist.

Have No Fear, Lundqvist is Here
With all that in mind, there is no reason to worry about Lundqvist.

The Rangers have a tough schedule to start the season so once things settle down, so will Lundqvist.
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10/10/13   |   Dan_B   |   1067 respect

Agreed. As a Rangers fan I have a lot of other concerns (what happened on D? Do we have enough goal scoring? Will the PP be improved?). Lundqvist is the last thing to worry about, Tuesday night notwithstanding.