Lundqvist on the verge of Making Rangers History

2/5/14 in NHL   |   patrickhoffman3530   |   122 respect

Feb 4, 2014; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) makes a save against the Colorado Avalanche during the third period at Madison Square Garden. The Rangers won 5-1. Mandatory Credit: Adam Hunger-USA TODAY SportsPrior to Henrik Lundqvist, the goaltender that everyone talked about when it came to the New York Rangers was Mike Richter.

This was with good reason as not only did Richter help the team win their first Stanley Cup in 54 years in 1994, but he was the team's all-time winningest goaltender and one that brought pride, tradition, and strength to the franchise. For the Blueshirts, he was simply known as the goaltender the team wanted in their net when everything was on the line and more often than not in his storied career, he delivered.

Richter retired during the 2003-04 season due to lingering concussion symptoms. When that happened, the team's goaltending picture became unclear and made both pundits and fans alike wonder if the team would ever have a goaltender like Richter in their franchise again.

This all changed in the 2005-06 season when Swedish netminder Henrik Lundqvist burst onto the Broadway scene. Since that time, Lundqvist has done what seems to be impossible and that is be known as the team's best goaltender in franchise history.

As of this writing, Lundqvist is three wins shy of 300 for his career and four wins of tying Richter's franchise record of 301 victories. Not only will Lundqvist eclipse these records within the next month or so, but he will go on to establish even more records as the face of the franchise.

Since joining the Rangers, Lundqvist has done everything and more for their franchise. He put the team back on the map in 2005-06 after years of mediocrity and missing the postseason and made the Rangers a team to be feared because of what he was capable of doing between the pipes on a nightly basis.

Jan 31, 2014; New York, NY, USA; New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist (30) celebrates after defeating the New York Islanders 4-1 at Madison Square Garden. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY SportsLundqvist is also the model of consistency for the Blueshirts. Since joining the league, Lundqvist has won at least 30 games in every season but one while also placing himself amongst the best goaltenders in the league in several netminding categories.

Lundqvist has been the team's most valuable player for seven straight seasons and even won the
Steven McDonald Extra Effort Award in his rookie season (2005-06). The "King" was also the first Rangers' netminder since John Vanbiesbrouck in 1986 to win the Vezina Trophy as the league's best goaltender in 2013.

Lundqvist has also been a pillar in the Rangers' community off the ice. He participates in
many different charities and makes his face known at many of the team sponsored events.

Simply put, Lundqvist deserves to be the one to tie and break Richter's record. Lundqvist has worked hard, has been loyal, has been through many ups and downs and if the team is going to win another Cup in this lifetime, it is going to be with him between the pipes.
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