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Lundqvist named NHL Defensive Player of Week

by Staff Writer / New York Rangers
Rangers goaltender Henrik Lundqvist, who led the Blueshirts to three victories with a 1.62 goals-against average and .946 save percentage between Jan. 16 and Jan. 22, was named the NHL's Defensive Player of the Week on Monday.

In recording his 20th victory of the season on Sunday night, Lundqvist became the first Rangers rookie netminder to reach 20 wins since Mike Richter in 1990-91. He also became the first Rangers goaltender to win 20 since Richter in 2001-02. He is currently 20-6-5 with a 2.14 goals-against average and .927 save percentage.

Lundqvist began his big week with a 28-save performance in a 4-2 victory over the Pittsburgh Penguins last Thursday. He then made 29 saves in a 3-2 shootout victory against the Boston Bruins on Saturday night and turned aside 31 of 32 shots in Sunday's 3-1 win over the New Jersey Devils.

"I've been dreaming about playing in this league and for this organization for such a long time," Lundqvist said. "I'm having so much fun, and so far it's been a great year. ... I love to play, especially at home. You get a lot of energy just being out there."

Goaltenders Alex Auld of the Vancouver Canucks (3-0-0, 1.68 GAA) and John Grahame of the Tampa Bay Lightning (2-0-0, 0.50 GAA) were runners-up to Lundqvist for Defensive Player of the Week honors.


Washington Capitals forward Alexander Ovechkin, who tallied seven points (three goals, four assists) in three games, was named the NHL's Offensive Player of the Week. Runners-up to Ovechkin were Ottawa Senators forward Dany Heatley, who posted six points (3-3--6
in three games) and Boston Bruins forward Patrice Bergeron (2-4--6 in three games).
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