Monday, June 20, 2011
Rangers to play in Sweden
By Matt Ehalt
Special to ESPNNewYork.com
The New York Rangers will play the Frolunda Indians of the Swedish Elite League (SEL) in an exhibition game in Gothenburg, Sweden, on Sept. 30, the NHL announced Monday. The game will be part of the Compuware NHL Premiere Challenge.
The exhibition game will be a special moment for Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist as he played five seasons with Frolunda before joining the Rangers in 2005 and his twin brother Joel, a forward, plays for Frolunda. The Lundqvist brothers previously played against each other when Joel was with Dallas.
In 2004-05, Lundqvist's last season with Frolunda, he led the SEL in wins, shutouts, goals against average and save percentage while leading Frolunda to the SEL title. He also won the award for best player as well as MVP for his season in which he was 33-8 with a 1.79 GAA. In the playoffs, Lundqvist had a sparkling 12-2 record with a 1.05 GAA.
Lundqvist, who just completed his sixth season with the Rangers, led the league in shutouts in 2010-11.
The Rangers will officially open their season internationally as they will take on the Los Angeles Kings on Oct. 7 and the Anaheim Ducks on Oct. 8 at the Ericcson Globe Arena in Stockholm, Sweden.
According to NHL.com, the Rangers previously played in Sweden in 1981 when they participated on the Dagens Nyheter Cup, a tournament that also featured Frolunda. The Rangers won that tournament.
Frolunda previously played the Ottawa Senators in an exhibition game in 2008, a game the Senators won 4-1.
Matt Ehalt is a regular contributor to ESPNNewYork.com.