Henrik Lundqvist will join MSG Network as a studio analyst for select New York Rangers telecasts beginning Thursday, when the Rangers play their home opener against the Dallas Stars at Madison Square Garden (7 p.m. ET; MSG, BSSW, ESPN+, NHL LIVE).
“It’s exciting to be a rookie again, and to join my new teammates Steve [Valiquette] and John [Giannone] on MSG Network this season,” Lundqvist said. “The Rangers run through my blood, and I can’t wait to break down games for the best fans in hockey.”
Lundqvist, who ranks sixth on the NHL wins list (459) and won the Vezina Trophy voted as the best goalie in the NHL in 2011-12, announced his retirement from the NHL on Aug. 20. His decision came after a long effort to try to come back and play after having open-heart surgery in January.
A heart ailment prevented Lundqvist from playing for the Washington Capitals last season. He signed a one-year, $1.5 million contract with them Oct. 9, 2020, after playing all 15 of his NHL seasons with New York. He had become an unrestricted free agent when the Rangers bought out the final season of his seven-year contract Sept. 30, 2020.
“We are thrilled to welcome Henrik Lundqvist, one of the most iconic and beloved figures in Rangers history, to the MSG Network family and add his engaging presence to our Rangers studio team,” MSG Network president/CEO Andrea Greenberg said. “After an exceptional and dominant playing career on the ice, Henrik will undoubtedly continue to bring that same level of excellence to our Rangers broadcasts as an analyst this season.”
Lundqvist, who was named to five NHL All-Star teams, will have his No. 30 retired by the Rangers when they host to the Minnesota Wild on Jan. 28, 2022.
“I don’t know, it’s hard to explain it, but I can say this, because [of] everything that happened with COVID and not really having a moment to thank everyone and kind of say goodbye in a way, this will be my opportunity,” Lundqvist told NHL.com Oct. 7. “I look forward to that a lot, to let everybody know how much I appreciated everything for so many years.
“I never thought I could feel that type of loyalty to another team. I grew up (in Sweden) being a Frolunda fan and then I came here, and the loyalty I feel to this organization and the love I feel for this organization, you can’t see that coming. It’s a great feeling, it really is.”
Lundqvist finished his NHL career 459-310-96 with a 2.43 goals-against average, .918 save percentage and 64 shutouts in 887 games, and 61-67 with a 2.30 GAA, .921 save percentage and 10 shutouts in 130 Stanley Cup Playoff games. He is the Rangers leader in wins, shutouts, games played, starts (871), saves (23,509), time on ice (51,816:51) and goalie points (27, all assists), and their postseason leader in wins, shutouts, games played, starts (130), saves (3,567) and time on ice (7,935:25).
He will join Valiquette,a former teammate and Rangers analyst, and Giannone, a host, in studio for pregame, intermission and postgame coverage on MSG Network. Hall of Fame play-by-play announcer Sam Rosen, analyst Joe Micheletti and in-game host and reporter Michelle Gingras are also part of the MSG Network telecast team.