Henrik Lundqvist’s Struggles Are Inexcusable (Video)


New York Rangers’ goaltender,
Henrik Lundqvist, has struggled mightily over the last two postseason games vs. the Lightning. His struggles are inexcusable.

New York Rangers
New York Rangers /

New York Rangers

New York Rangers‘ starting goaltender, Henrik Lundqvist, is arguably the best goaltender in the NHL today.  However, if you started watching hockey for the first time a few days ago, you would think he is one of the worst.

The Rangers are currently in the Eastern Conference Finals vs. the
Tampa Bay Lightning, down 2-1 in the series, losing 2 straight after taking a 1-0 lead in the series after Game 1.  If you started watching hockey in Game 2 of the Eastern Conference Finals then you would think Lundqvist was very inexperienced and a novice at best.  In both Game 2 and Game 3, both Rangers losses, Lundqvist surrendered 6 goals each, not total, vs. the Lightning, in what was a 6-2 Game 2 loss and a 6-5 Game 3 loss.

Now granted, not all of the goals were Lundqvist’s fault.  Poor defensive play in front of Lundqvist played a large part in giving up 12 goals in 2 games, however, at least half of the goals scored by the Lightning over the past two games could have been stopped by Lundqvist.

Take the first Lightning goal scored in Game 3 for example:

Yes, Rangers’ defenseman, Dan Boyle, held on to the puck too long and turned it over at the offensive blue line, however, the original shot on goal had nothing on it and instead of Lundqvist just covering the puck, he tried to poke check it away, and instead he poke checked the puck right on to the stick of the Lightning’s best player,
Steven Stamkos, in which he buried it.

This cut the Rangers 2-0 lead to 2-1 and the game dramatically changed from that point forward.  After Stamkos’ goal, Game 3 turned into an offensive showdown that the Rangers ended up losing 6-5 in overtime.

Take a look at the game winning goal that Lundqvist gave up in overtime in Game 3 as well:

If Lundqvist did not make his poor decision on the Lightning’s first goal of the game, Game 3 maybe never would have gotten to this point. But still, even with Lundqvist’s first mistake, the Rangers still had a chance to win this game in overtime but instead Lundqvist allowed a horribly soft goal in overtime, as you saw above, resulting in a Rangers’ 6-5 loss in overtime.

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Ultimately, I feel Lundqvist’s performances over the last two games are inexcusable, not just because the Rangers are in the Eastern Conference Finals, but also because this season is the most rest Lundqvist has ever gotten in his entire career, due to his throat injury that sidelined him for almost 2 whole months.  A more rested and fresher Lundqvist should result in excellent goaltending and shutouts, however, so far in this postseason Lundqvist has not recorded one shutout and is coming off of his two worst playoff games in his entire career.

Now I’m not one to always place blame on Lundqvist, but if Rangers’ fans keep giving him a pass, even after the Rangers’ last two games, then you are just letting your allegiance to Lundqvist cloud your judgement.

Next: New York Rangers Face Tampa Bay Lightning in Game Four

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