Antti Raanta shut out his former team
It’s been over 50 years since a Rangers goalie last did that.
Henrik Lundqvist has never played against his old team. He can’t; he’s only ever played for Frolunda in Sweden and the New York Rangers in the NHL, and it’s not like those two are ever going to meet up for a game.
That also means Lundqvist has never shut out his old team.
But you know who has? Antti Raanta.
Raanta now has five shutouts throughout his NHL career. Three came when he was playing for the Chicago Blackhawks. The fourth was in his very first game as a Ranger, a 22-save effort.
The fifth saw him stop 26 shots in a 1-0 overtime win against the Blackhawks: that very first (and only other) NHL team he played for.
Turns out, that’s not a common thing to do among Rangers goalies. Via the Elias Sports Bureau:
He's the first Rangers goaltender to produce a shutout against a team for which he used to play since Hall of Famer Jacques Plante did so in a 0-0 tie versus the Canadiens on March 8, 1964. Raanta is the first Rangers goaltender to earn a shutout win against a former team since Feb. 2, 1939, when Dave Kerr defeated the New York Americans, 7-0.
Okay, so Plante didn’t have the advantage of overtime to get the win, and Kerr certainly didn’t need it. Still, the mental fortitude it takes to win 1-0 is definitely impressive.
And those are records going back over 50, almost 80 years. It’s a unique set of circumstances, to be sure, but Raanta has met them - and he was awesome in doing so.