Henrik Lundqvist “believes” in Peter Laviolette and the Capitals, weighs in on U.S. Election and more
Forever Blueshirts was the first to bring you this great Henrik Lundqvist interview for U.S. audiences. Fans of the New York Rangers were happy to hear Hank say he will come back once he retires.
Now The Daily Goal Horn is happy to bring you part two of this interview with a focus on the Washington Capitals. The 38 year-old legendary backstop went on record about the team and much more.
Johan Rylander of the Göteborgs-Posten got the exclusive interview and gave me early access in order to bring you these translations.
Henrik Lundqvist believes in the Capitals
In part one, Lundqvist wanted it known he is not looking to come in and accept the backup role to Ilya Samsonov. “I will compete! And I’m gonna to do the best in whatever role it becomes,” Henrik said decisively. “Of course, I’m gonna want to play.”
“[Washington] has also said that in the end it is about winning games,” Lundqvist revealed about his upcoming season in DC, “we will see how many games I get.” As for Samsonov, Hank had nothing but praise for him. “He is a young and very promising goalkeeper, and I will work with him and maybe help him a little. But at the same time we are both there to play.”
The iconic net minder also gave more details on why he chose the Capitals. “I believe in the team, I believe in the new coach Peter Laviolette. They have won, but are still hungry and want to do it again,” he said. “It’s incredibly difficult to predict how the season will end but I have a good feeling.”
Henrik Lundqvist happy to be with familiar faces
Another reason why the Capitals were so attractive is a chance to play with some old friends. Nicklas Bäckström and former Ranger Carl Hagelin helped sealed the deal with the decision. “We’ve already seen each other in DC when we were there a few weeks ago. I know both of them well,” he said.
“It will be fun to play with “Hagge” again and fun to be with “Bäckis” for more than a few weeks, as it was with the national team,” Lundqvist continued. “[Backstrom] has an incredibly important role in Washington. He’s one of their absolute best players.”
Henrik is done facing Alex Ovechkin’s shot…even in practice
One think Henrik stressed was not having to face Alex Ovechkin’s slapshot ever again. After 15 years suiting up against it, he has no desire to face one of the hardest shots in the NHL.
“Yeah, he can practice that shot without a goalkeeper!” Lundqvist exclaimed. “But it’s still going to be a good workout. Having one of the best shooters against you in practices is a positive thing.”
Of course, joining forces with Ovechkin is about one thing. “It’s to win,” Hank began. “But it’s also about the journey. There is a lot of emotions that come with the journey, with the group, with the games. Sure, you have an end goal that drives you, but there are other things that drive you as well. And in that aspect Washington felt very attractive.”
Henrik Lundqvist on the U.S. Election and COVID-19
Johan didn’t want to ignore the obvious big story in the U.S. which was a Presidential election during a pandemic. “Yes, it’s hard not to follow!,” Hank answered. “So much has happened in the last five months. Corona, different movements, the election. It has been a lot for the American people at the same time. I hope that it can settle down a bit and that people can find a little more faith in the future and harmony. It has been quite messy for various reasons.”
Henrik also views the news about a vaccine as “positive energy”. He also discussed the personal impacts of COVID-19 to him and his family. Frölunda had to recently cancel games due to positive tests and his twin brother Joel was one of the players infected.
“I think we have managed. In fact, we were very drowsy in March and I thought I had it,” Henrik revealed. “But then I had no antibodies when I was tested during the summer.”
“There were very many people around us in New York who had the virus. I hope for the vaccine so people can start to see the light in the tunnel. We need it.”
Note: I want to once again thank Johan Rylander for giving me early access to get these translations out to you.