Rangers, Henrik Lundqvist agree to seven-year extension
King Henrik will be running the show for the New York Rangers for quite some time. The team’s most notable player headed for unrestricted free agency in 2014, goaltender Henrik Lundqvist has signed a long-term extension with the team. A seventh round pick of the Rangers in 2000, Lundqvist should now be a Ranger for the rest of his career.
TSN’s Darren Dreger was the first to report this morning that Lundqvist was signing a seven-year extension with the team. His colleague, insider Bob McKenzie, followed up shortly thereafter with confirmation of the deal and the average annual value of Lundqvist’s contract. The deal will total $59.5 million over seven years.
Vague details. Hearing 7 years and $8+ mil per for Lundqvist.
— Darren Dreger (@DarrenDreger) December 4, 2013
As @DarrenDreger reported, Henrik Lundqvist’s extension with NYR is for seven years with an AAV of $8.5M.
— Bob McKenzie (@TSNBobMcKenzie) December 4, 2013
The deal will make Lundqvist the highest-paid goaltender in the NHL, according to Capgeek, after Boston goaltender Tuukka Rask signed an eight-year deal this offseason that will pay $7.5 million per year starting in 2014-15. Lundqvist was in the final season of a six-year deal that paid $6.875 million annually that began back in the 2008-09 season.
While Lundqvist has traditionally started the vast majority of the Rangers’ games each season, 26-year-old rookie Cam Talbot is making a strong impression in a backup role, posting a 6-2 record with a 1.79 goals-against average and .934 save percentage with two shutouts. Lundqvist’s numbers this season have not been much worse (2.51, .917, two shutouts), but his record is only 8-11, due in large part to a Rangers offense that is just 25th in the NHL in goals for.
With this deal now in place, the Rangers will look to secure the rest of their roster for 2014 and beyond, as they currently have just five forwards and two defensemen under contract beyond this season. The Rangers may struggle to re-sign both of their next priority free agents, right wing Ryan Callahan and defenseman Dan Girardi. Callahan is currently making $4.275 million annually, while Girardi is at $3.325 million, and both could command higher salaries on the open market.
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Around the Rink Columnist Joe Ray – @jpray_SK
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