The NHL announced earlier today that Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist has earned his 5th Vezina Trophy nomination.
An irregular season for King Henrik, between the lockout, the Rangers offensive struggles, and constant roster and line shufflings, he still managed a 24-16-3 record, with a 2.05 goals against average and .926 save percentage.
His fellow nominees are Columbus Blue Jackets’ Sergei Bobrovsky and San Jose Sharks’ Antti Niemi.
Unlike last year, when the Rangers were stronger and a playoff appearance was a given, Lundqvist was unable to rest down the stretch, accumulating a total of 43 games played of the possible 48.
He does not have the same numbers as last year’s magical campaign – 39-18-5, 1.97 GAA, .929 SV%, 8 shutouts – but had a strong finish for the Blueshirts that ensured a nomination.
As there is a playoff game tonight (Game 4 vs. the Washington Capitals at MSG), let’s look at how Lundqvist has fared in games after learning of his nominations:
2006 – Next game: October 5, 2006; 5-2 win vs. Capitals
2007 – Next game: May 1, 2007; 2-1 win vs. Buffalo Sabres
2008 – Next game: April 25, 2008; 5-4 loss at Pittsburgh Penguins
2012 – Next game: April 26, 2012; 2-1 win vs. Ottawa Senators
2013 – Next game: May 8, 2013; ????????????????????????
Henrik Lundqvist ends with a 3-1 record (3-0 at home) in his next game after nominations. Perhaps tonight’s home game at Madison Square Garden will continue the trend.
Update: With a 4-3 victory over the Caps, Henrik Lundqvist’s post-Vezina nomination record stands at 4-1; 4-0 at home!