Henrik Lundqvist was on The Michael Kay show on Wednesday and said the following (ESPN):
- On the season, "super excited to be back and playing tomorrow. We had a great camp. It's exciting, a lot of people around us are unsure of where we stand, for us as a group, it's a great challenge to see how far we can push this. Right now our main focus is to have a great start and really try to get into the playoffs. If you get in there, you never know. I think that is a good mindset to have."
- On sticking with the rebuild, "I made a commitment to this organization way back and it's a dream of mine and goal of mine to finish my career here. I love the way the organization treats me, getting the opportunity to play in NY is a great challenge to have. A rebuild, a lot of people think of it as 3-4 years but I think, today, you see in hockey that it's all about getting the right pieces and you can do it pretty fast if you do a good job. This year we have added some great pieces, I think it's a year where we can build for the next couple of years but I hope we can be a team that surprises a lot of people. When that came up in February it was not a very long discussion, I want to be in NY, I want to play here, try to be here when we turn things around and try to go for it again. That would be the ultimate dream and goal for me."
- Did they tell you they could trade you to a contender, "we didn't get that far, to that question. It was more, 'this is happening, how do you feel?' and I was like, okay, let's do it, let's work through it and see how far we can push it and how fast we can turn it around. There was no secondary questions of looking at options or anything like that, it was not necessary. To me, it would feel very strange to try to go somewhere else to accomplish something when my biggest goal is to win here."
- On how it would feel to win if not with the Rangers, "it's hard to think about it, like I said earlier, I want to finish my career here, I want to see how far we can push this and how fast we can turn it around. The game is a little different now. Back then, 15-20 years ago, you had your top-five teams and knew a couple of teams that would be in the conference final. It's hard to predict who will make it, who won't make it and that is what makes it exciting. I think a lot of teams can surprise and turn things around fast if we get the right pieces in place. That is what I believe and I believe we are on the right track and excited to start the new season."
- On the locker room, "We are having a lot of fun in our group right now. A lot of young guys and energy. We are coming off a long-break and we are just having a lot of fun. A lot of love and support, no hate in the locker room."
- On Lias Andersson, "hard question to answer, all I can say is that he had a great camp, worked really hard, he is very close and people that watch the games, he is contributing in different ways. The plan to get him more minutes and responsibility in Hartford is a smart move and he will be back soon, I believe. He is a great player and great attitude and that is what i told him, just keep working the same way and things will happen fast. The competition is high, we are 55 guys and only a few spots in the middle. Keep the right attitude and work the same way and good things will happen for him shortly."
- Do you think you can play into your 40s, "I hope so but right now it's important to think about the here and now and focus on this year and see how good we can do. You take it year by year. A couple of things need to play in and physically you need to feel great and mentally you gotta love what you do. When you put so much energy and time into something, right now I love the game, love coming to practice, compete, to play the games and as long as I do that I will try my best to continue and be at the level we need to be to earn my minutes. To be compared to one of the best athletes out there is a stretch but being a goalie is about reading and making good decisions and not as explosive as a power forward so that is definitely in my favor....I feel great. I must say, this summer, no issues, I took care of my knee at the end of last season, I was able to train how I wanted, skated more, more hours in the gym and now it's about timing and technical stuff."
- Will you watch the Yankees, "I might watch it. Day before a game I usually take it really slow at home. I've been home so much during camp and as soon as we start tomorrow we are off. We travel a lot the next few weeks, it's kind of the last night before you take a breath and go."