With his 31-save performance in shadows and sun at Citi Field, Henrik Lundqvist went 4-0 in outdoor games and tied Tony Esposito for eighth place on the NHL’s all-time wins list with 432.
The 35-year-old goaltender has a 1.98 goals-against average and a .934 save percentage in the outdoor games, which include the Winter Classic in Philadelphia in 2012 and games against the Islanders and Devils in 2014.
“It was more about this game today than about the past,” he said. “It’s just a fun experience that you don’t take for granted. In the room, we discussed that you’re not going to enjoy this as a great memory unless you win.”
During Monday’s game, Lundqvist made his 20,259th NHL save, moving above Nikolai Khabibulin for 14th on the all-time list and passed Khabibulin for the most saves by a goaltender born outside of North America.
Fast a surprise starter
Jesper Fast, who was not expected to return until next week after a quad strain Dec. 21, was a surprise starter and an unsung hero.
“There’s no doubt that he’s a big part of our penalty-killing” which was four for five Monday, Alain Vigneault said after the 3-2 overtime win. “Yesterday [Sunday], if someone would have asked me, I would’ve said he wasn’t going to play, but he felt good playing defense in practice [Sunday] and told me just after warm-ups that he was good to go.”
The right wing found Paul Carey with a pass to the slot on the Rangers’ first goal at 4:09 and played 12:29.
Gilroy on Olympic team
Matt Gilroy, the North Belllmore native who played parts of three seasons with the Rangers, was named to the U.S. Olympic team.