Star goaltender Henrik Lundqvist captured the New York Rangers all-time goalie wins record Tuesday night, picking up his 302nd career victory for the blueshirts in a game where his services were barely needed.
It wasn't that Lundqvist lacked for work, but rather that the Rangers managed to post a season-high eight goals in an 8-4 win over the Ottawa Senators, making their goaltender a relative afterthought. The 2012 Vezina Trophy winner was actually rather busy, with the 39 shots he faced matching the third-highest total he's seen all season.
Oddly enough, the Rangers own an impressive 4-0-1 record in the five games that have seen Lundqvist peppered with 39 shots or more, due in large part to the goaltender's .935 save percentage in those contests. At his best under pressure, King Henrik has shown exactly why he was named team MVP in each of the previous seven seasons.
With that team MVP streak likely headed to eight, Lundqvist and his lifetime 302-193-61 W-L-OTL record have supplanted Mike Richter atop the franchise wins list, needing less than nine full seasons to accomplish the feat.
Richter compiled a 301-258-72 W-L-T record in a 14-year career (1989-90 to 2002-03) spent entirely with the Rangers, and he still holds franchise records for minutes (38,183), goalie games (666) and saves (17,379), among other categories.
Lundqvist, who has spent his entire nine-year career with the blueshirts, will likely best most of Richter's Rangers records within the next few seasons. Lundqvist's 564 goalie games rank third in franchise history, as do his 33,629 minutes. His 14,523 saves are good for second place, while his 49 shutouts match Ed Giacomin's for the franchise record.
Already a king in the eyes of most Rangers' fans, Lundqvist will one day reign supreme over the team's record book.
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