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WATCH: Henrik Lundqvist Has No. 30 Retired At Madison Square Garden



Rangers legend Henrik Lundqvist

The New York Rangers held a ceremony fit for a king on Friday, as Henrik Lundqvist had his No. 30 retired and raised to the rafters of Madison Square Garden.

Lundqvist originally went to New York in the seventh round of the 2000 NHL Draft. He spent 15 years with the Rangers, going 459-310-46 with a .918 save percentage and 2.43 GAA through 887 career games.

The Swede signed with the Washington Capitals in the 2020 offseason after the Rangers bought out the remainder of his contract. However, a heart condition ultimately sidelined him for the season and ended his NHL playing career.

“In the end, the heart said no. I look back at it and kind of laugh at how much I struggled to go somewhere else,” Lundqvist said on Friday, per the New York Post’s Mollie Walker.

READ MORE ON WHN: Holtby Reflects On Time With Capitals, ‘Forever Grateful’ To D.C.

After hanging up the pads, New York immediately made plans to retire his No. 30, as the name “Henrik Lundqvist” continues to live on in New York, on and off the ice. The team elected to hold his ceremony on Jan. 28, the only time in 2021-22 that the Rangers play host to the Minnesota Wild, so that Lundqvist’s former teammate and close friend, Mats Zuccarello, could be in attendance.

Lundqvist’s ceremony was in front of a full crowd of Rangers faithful, as fans packed MSG to pay tribute to their former goaltender. The team and several others, including Mike Richter and bandmate John McEnroe, stepped up to pay tribute to “The King,” while also getting him a number of gifts.

Nicklas Backstrom, his Swedish teammate and would-be Capitals teammate, also paid tribute to him.

Then, to close things out, Lundqvist’s No. 30 was finally raised to the rafters at MSG. Lundqvist is just one of 10 Rangers to have his number retired, joining Rod Gilbert (7), Ed Giacomin (1), Mike Richter (35), Mark Messier (11), Brian Leetch (2), Adam Graves (9), Harry Howell (3), Jean Ratelle (19) and Vic Hadfield (11).

The 39-year-old was emotional his number was raised. And in all, the ceremony was the perfect homecoming for Lundqvist.

“Congratulations, Henrik. And thank you for everything you’ve given to the city of New York and the New York Rangers organization,” the P.A. announcer said.