The Washington Capitals signed Henrik Lundqvist to a one year, $1.5 million deal last week. The future Hall of Fame goaltender is hoping for his Ray Bourque moment in Washington, after being unable to get over the hump for 15 years in New York.
Recently, Nicklas Backstrom and Carl Hagelin shared their thoughts on Hank’s signing to several Swedish publications. Both players have been Lundqvist’s teammate before and were really excited to have him in Washington.
“We’ve played him a lot and we know just how good he is,” Backstrom said to Aftonbladet as translated by Magnus Cadelin. “This is a world-class goalie who plays with fire and is an incredible professional.”
Backstrom has prior experience playing with Lundqvist while suiting up on the Swedish National Team.
“It’s really fun having Hank on [the Capitals],” Backstrom said. “I think it’ll be perfect. He wants to win and so do we. He’s one of the guys who’s been in the league longest without winning, you really want a guy like that to win. It gives us an extra boost for sure.”
In regards to the goaltending duo, Backstrom believes that whatever next season brings due to the coronavirus pandemic, having two capable goaltenders will be crucial.
“It’s going to be an intense season with games coming fast at you in a tight schedule, a lot of back-to-backs,” Backstrom said. “‘Henke’ and Samsonov is a great tandem. The best goalie should be in net every night. Henke will play a lot, I think. It’s great.”
Meanwhile, Carl Hagelin was Lundqvist’s teammate for four seasons with the New York Rangers.
“It was great playing with Henke,” Hagelin said to Aftonbladet. “I especially remember, and now look forward to, is attitude in training. He makes everybody, especially forwards, better by always giving it a 100% every session. He will help our young goalie Ilya Samsonov a lot too.”
He added, “I’m happy for the team, for him and for me.”
Translation by Magnus Cadelin
Headline photo: Elizabeth Kong/RMNB
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