Lundqvist felt embarrassment, hopelessness against Penguins

Justin K. Aller / Getty Images Sport / Getty

There's no solace in being the most handsome man on the planet. That's how bad Henrik Lundqvist feels Saturday night.

The New York Rangers all-world goaltender somehow finished only two of his club's five games in the first round against the Pittsburgh Penguins, as he was injured in Game 1 and pulled in Games 4 and 5. It's Lundqvist's shortest spring since 2011, with the Rangers bowing out meekly in five games.

"In the second period, it was a feeling of embarrassment to give up that many goals," Lundqvist said, according to the New York Post's Brett Cyrgalis. "But also a sense of hopelessness. I think we played a team that was smarter, better, and (had) better goaltending."

The Penguins put up a four spot in the second, but "The King" graciously faced the media after his team's stunning first-round defeat Saturday, as the competitive window seemingly slammed shut in the Rangers' faces. It was a very un-Lundqvist-like postseason that saw him finish with an .867 save percentage in five games.

However, the truth is Lundqvist got no help. The Penguins scored their goals Saturday on 10-bell scoring chances, and the goaltender was left helpless by his teammates. It wouldn't have made a difference who was playing in the Rangers' crease on Saturday - they were losing that game, and losing it handily.

And so begins a summer of soul-searching for the Blueshirts, with Lundqvist having turned 34 in early March. He can still play - it's the rest of the roster that's the issue. While his playoffs were certainly a disappointment, the 2015-16 season was the seventh straight in which Lundqvist posted a save percentage of .920 or higher. He remains elite. The same cannot be said for New York's roster, as Pittsburgh proved.

Signed through 2019-20, if Lundqvist doesn't win a Stanley Cup when it's all said and done, he'll go down as one of the best to have never done so.

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Lundqvist felt embarrassment, hopelessness against Penguins
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