Legendary New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist announced he is sitting out the upcoming NHL season because of a heart condition. Lundqvist, 38, signed a one-year contract with the Washington Capitals in October, following 15 years with the Rangers.
“It breaks my heart (literally) to share this news: I will not be joining the Capitals this upcoming season,” Lundqvist posted on social media. “After many weeks of tests and conversations with specialists around the country, it’s been determined that a heart condition will prevent me from taking the ice. Together, we have decided that the risk of playing before remedying my condition is too high. So I will spend the coming months figuring out the best course of action.”
He went on to thank the Capitals and said, “I will take the next few weeks to be with my family and I’ll be back to share the next steps.”
The Capitals signed Lundqvist primarily to serve as a veteran backup to Ilya Samsonov. They lost longtime goalie Braden Holtby in free agency.
“The Washington Capitals are supportive of Henrik’s decision to step away from hockey at this time due to his heart condition,” the team said in a statement. “Our players’ health is of the utmost importance, and we stand behind Henrik’s decision. We want to wish him and his family all the best moving forward.”