GREENBURGH, N.Y. — Henrik Lundqvist is one player who isn’t on the bubble in training camp. He knows he’s made the team, so a bad showing in a preseason game isn’t all that big a deal for him.
Still, the Rangers’ 36-year-old goaltender wasn’t exactly proud of his first preseason effort, where he allowed five goals on 22 shots in last Wednesday’s 6-4 loss to the Philadelphia Flyers. And he’ll be looking for better results in his second start, Monday night at the Garden against the Devils.
“I think I had too much movement in the first game,’’ Lundqvist said Sunday. “I’ve been watching some video now, the last few days, and analyzing a little bit. So that’s a technical thing — move less, and then it comes to focus.
“I think that’s the hardest part early on,’’ he continued. “I usually feel the best when I play three games a week for, like, a few weeks. And now, you haven’t played in four, five months. I know that’s my biggest challenge, to kind of, just get the focus in the right place, and then just work on this technical stuff.’’
New coach David Quinn said he’s not worried about getting a bounce back performance from Lundqvist in his second preseason game.
“I haven’t thought about it for two seconds,’’ Quinn said.
Quinn said he saw all he needed to see from Lundqvist the next day at practice, when he said Lundqvist had “probably his best practice of the year.’’
“Listen, first game of the [preseason], he’d be the first to admit he didn’t have a great night, but he also had a couple tough goals, too,’’ Quinn said. “The first goal was batted out of the air; I think it was the fourth one went off the post and hit him in the backside and went in. Ideally, you’d like him to have those, but he’s working on things.’’
Lundqvist said physically, everything is fine, and with three games remaining in the preseason, he expects to play half the game Monday and then play the entire game Wednesday to get ready for the regular season opener Oct. 4 at home against Nashville.
Notes & quotes: The Rangers finish the preseason with three games in four nights, beginning with Monday's game. They play a home game Wednesday against the Islanders and finish in Philadelphia Thursday against the Flyers. Quinn said the Rangers need the 44 players still in camp to get through the three games, but he expects the team will be down to its final 23-man squad after Thursday’s preseason finale.