New York Rangers Henrik Lundqvist Showing Eli Manning-Like Class in Backup Role

New York Rangers, Henrik Lundqvist

The New York Rangers and the New York Giants have something in common: their long-time face of the franchise has handled their demotion to backups with class and dignity. The soon to be retired Eli Manning handled his demotion this year behind rookie Daniel Jones without any public complaining or dramatics. Blueshirt goaltender Henrik Lundqvist has done quite the same as he has been backing up youngsters Igor Shesterkin and Alexandar Georgiev.

The New York Ranger Goalie did not see much action in January

Since Shesterkin was promoted on Jan 3, Lundqvist has been the backup for six of the past seven games. His only start was the most difficult match of the month, a road trip to the defending Stanley Cup Champions St. Louis Blues. For the other six contests, Lundqvist has been the backup in all of these contests. Head Coach David Quinn has done this to provide a safety blanket in case either of the youngsters falters.  Quinn also indicated that he wants Lundqvist around the team by stating that “He’s a guy who carries a lot of weight in that locker room. I want him around, and I want him to be part of the game.” The best part of this is that he has accepted and at least publically embraced the role. Not only has he done this, but he has also been seen working after practice with the “third” goaltender, the player who will not dress for the next game and get less practice time than the other two goalies. He has also been one of the first players off the bench to congratulate his fellow goaltender when they have won.

Like Eli Manning, The New York Ranger Veteran is handling the situation with class and dignity

Especially during the last month, the Ranger goalie has dealt with the difficult three goaltender situation quite well. Unintentionally, Coach David Quinn praised Lundqvist for accepting the role in a manner consistent with Eli Manning when he said: “It’s about players adapting in their careers, and as their careers evolve.” Quinn also went on to say that “Henrik is in a situation where he’s obviously not playing the amount he’s played in the past. That doesn’t mean he’s not a really good goalie. We have faith in him. But our organization feels that we’re gonna have three goalies here as of right now, and that is the situation we are in.” And like Eli Manning, he has not made any public statements condemning the situation, this in spite of some rumblings on social media that he waive his no-movement clause and make way for his younger counterparts. New York sports fans have to be quite happy to have such stalwart cornerstones of their teams for almost two decades.