Lundqvist, Rangers in ‘Preliminary Stages’ of Contract Negotiations
Added by Ryan Heine on August 20, 2013.
Photo via NYTimes.com
Henrik Lundqvist claims he is not even thinking about free agency. The same cannot be said about Rangers fans all over, as July 1, 2014 inches closer and so does Lundqvist’s pending free agency. Yet fans were able to take a breath on Sunday as Lundqvist reassured us all that the ultimate goal is to sign an extension with New York, as reported by Larry Brooks.
“If we can find a solution, it’s no secret that this is where I want to be; I’m not thinking about free agency at all,” said Lundqvist. “The way the organization has treated me, the way that our team has played over the last few years, the way I feel about New York City, this is definitely the place I want to be. But we do have a few things we have to talk about.”
Lundqvist joined six teammates in Brad Richards, Rick Nash, Dan Girardi, Michael Del Zotto, Mats Zuccarello and Derek Dorsett on the ice on Sunday. The Rangers goalie will enter his sixth and final season of his $41.25 million deal that he signed in 2008.
You can expect Lundqvist to earn between $8 and $9.5 million on an eight-year max contract. Hopefully Lundqvist is willing to sign closer to the $8 million per year amount as it would give the Rangers some more money for other players.
Lundqvist also explained that talks are in their preliminary stages. From everything that has been said, it appears that by preliminary stages he means little to no negotiating.
“Ideally, of course it would be nice to have everything in place by the time the season starts, but at the same time, it’s not a must,” Lundqvist said. “My agent is going to be handling it all until I have to be involved at the end, so I am going to be able to focus mentally on playing without the contract being a distraction.
Lundqvist also appeared excited to get to work with new coach Alain Vigneault, though he is yet to speak with him.
“I haven’t talked to him yet, but I’ve heard really good things about him from some guys who played in Vancouver,” Lundqvist said. “Any time there’s a new coach it’s exciting to see how it changes the team, the room and, obviously, how we play.