(Reuters) – Washington Capitals goalkeeper Henrik Lundqvist said on Friday he is recovering well after open-heart surgery this week to repair a condition that will prevent the Swede from playing for the National Hockey League side this season.
Lundqvist, who enjoyed huge success with the New York Rangers before signing with the Capitals in October, announced last week that he was scheduled to have surgery for a condition that was revealed after a physical led to further tests.
“Day 3. Surgery went really well. About 5 hours to get it all taken care of,” Lundqvist, 38, wrote on Twitter.
“Really appreciate the great staff here at the Clevland (sic) Clinic. Last few days has been pretty crazy but feel like I’m in really good hands. Every day is a step in the right direction.”
The Rangers bought out the final year of Lundqvist’s contract in September, ending the Swede’s 15-season run as the face of the NHL’s most valuable franchise.
Lundqvist holds more than 50 Rangers franchise records, including the all-time mark for wins, appearances by a keeper, shutouts, playoff appearances and playoff wins.
Known as “The King”, Lundqvist won the Vezina Trophy as the NHL’s best goaltender for the 2011-12 season and was a finalist for the award in four other years.
Lundqvist, who helped Sweden claim the Olympic gold medal in 2006, has earned more career NHL wins (459) than any other non-North American born goalkeeper and reached the 400-win mark faster than any other in his position.
Lundqvist’s playing time with the Rangers decreased last season with the emergence of then-rookie Igor Shesterkin.
(Reporting by Frank Pingue in Toronto; Editing by Christian Radnedge)