Henrik Lundqvist Officially Beomes New York Rangers' Best Goalie of All Time

By Cody Reiber
Adam Hunger - USA TODAY Sports
Adam Hunger – USA TODAY Sports

The New York Rangers continued to bolster their playoff hopes against the Detroit Red Wings, winning 3-0 in thrilling fashion at Madison Square Garden Sunday afternoon.

But besides the fact that the Rangers have won two in a row and look as if they have regained their success, jumping back into second place in the Metropolitan Division, today’s game was a milestone game for goaltender Henrik Lundqvist who recorded the 49th shutout of his career, tying Rangers’ great Eddie Giacomin for the most regular season shutouts in Rangers history.

Lundqvist’s 49th career shutout puts him in 27th place all time for career regular season shutouts. At this pace, Lundqvist — who is only 32 and has only played nine seasons — is capable of doubling this statistic by the end of his career. Lundqvist has made it to the franchise record of 49 shutouts in only nine seasons, one season faster than Giacomin, propelling him into talks as one of the best Rangers goalies of all time.

While Lundqvist now leads the Rangers in regular season shutouts, he still trails the greats in other categories. He is aging, so no one really knows how much longer he has to wear a Rangers sweater. Lundqvist recently signed a seven-year deal with the team that will hopefully keep him in New York for the foreseeable future. This will give him plenty of time to break the record he just tied and some others along the way.

Lundqvist became just the 29th goaltender all-time to reach 300 victories and is the sixth active netminder to do so. He is now just one win shy of equaling Mike Richter‘s franchise record of 301 wins.

Depending on which games he starts, Lundqvist could tie and possibly break Richter’s record this week on the road when the Rangers play three straight away from Madison Square Garden. While Lundqvist would most certainly want to break the record at home in front of the Garden Faithful, this might not be the case if he starts all three away games and the Rangers continue their good play of late.

He still might be over 300 wins from equaling the accomplishments of Martin Brodeur, but Lundqvist is no doubt one of the elite goaltenders in the league today. He will continue to have success for at least another decade.

With Lundqvist posed to break the two biggest goaltending records in franchise history, this will undoubtedly put him in the mindset for a deep run in this year’s playoffs. Will the breaking of the career wins record propel Lundqvist and the Rangers to the Stanley Cup this year?

The last Rangers goalie to win the Stanley Cup was in fact Mike Richter, so would only be fitting and slightly coincidental that Lundqvist beats Richter’s record in a season where the team wins their first Stanley Cup in 20 years.

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