Lundqvist’s 15-year run with the Rangers led to September when the crew purchased out the ultimate yr of his contract. The 38-year-old turned an unrestricted free agent in a crowded discipline of goaltenders. Lundqvist nonetheless has a want to win a Stanley Cup, which has eluded him to date, and signing with one of many Rangers’ Metropolitan Division rivals permits him to remain on the East Coast together with his spouse and two daughters.
Lundqvist has a prolonged historical past taking part in in opposition to the Capitals; he has confronted them in 5 playoff sequence in his profession, profitable three of them.
The Capitals are parting methods with longtime goaltender Braden Holtby in free company, turning to 23-year-old Ilya Samsonov as the first starter for subsequent season. With subsequent yr’s schedule in flux however anticipated to be condensed with loads of back-to-backs, Lundqvist may get extra begins than a typical backup.
“I nonetheless like to compete. I nonetheless love the sport and I nonetheless wish to WIN,” Lundqvist tweeted 4 days after the Rangers buyout was introduced.
Lundqvist signing with the Capitals was first reported by TSN.
Capitals GM Brian MacLellan telegraphed the signing throughout a convention name with reporters after this week’s draft. When requested particularly about Lundqvist, MacLellan stated: “We’re in search of a backup veteran goaltender. He is a extremely strong candidate for us.”
Lundqvist carried an $8.5 million salary-cap hit with the Rangers and was scheduled to make $4.5 million with a $1 million signing bonus on the ultimate yr of a seven-year, $59.5 million contract he signed in December 2013. That contract carried a full no-movement clause, so a buyout was essentially the most expedient manner of shifting on from Lundqvist.
The Rangers went with three goaltenders throughout the 2019-20 season, as Lundqvist shared time with Alexandar Georgiev and Igor Shesterkin, each 24 years previous. Georgiev performed 34 video games, Lundqvist performed 30, and Shesterkin, a rookie sensation, went 10-2 in 12 contests.
Lundqvist has been the face of the franchise — and one of the fashionable athletes in New York Metropolis — for over a decade. He was drafted within the seventh spherical in 2000 by the crew and made the soar from Sweden to the NHL in 2005-06.
He has a document of 459-310-96 in 887 video games, with a save proportion of .918, a 2.43 goals-against common and 64 shutouts. He’s the franchise chief in all these classes.
Lundqvist is a five-time finalist for the Vezina Trophy, profitable the award for the NHL’s high goaltender in 2011-12.