Henrik Lundqvist cannot return for Capitals: ‘My heart isn’t ready’

Henrik Lundqvist cannot return for Capitals: 'My heart isn't ready'
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While it doesn’t sound like Henrik Lundqvist is totally giving up on resuming his NHL career following heart surgery, the 39-year-old goalie announced that he won’t reach his “stretch goal” of joining the Washington Capitals by the end of the season.

In Lundqvist’s case, he’s speaking literally when he wrote that his “heart isn’t ready.” It’s not all negative news, as he also wrote that “training has been going really well, and I’ve been feeling good.”

Henrik Lundqvist announces he isn’t ready to return for Capitals

As part of that two-tweet announcement, Lundqvist noted that a recent checkup revealed inflammation around his heart.

Lundqvist experiencing this setback is certainly a shame. That said, it’s important that he makes his health the top priority. While Lundqvist still hopes to win that elusive Stanley Cup, he’s accomplished just about everything else an NHL goalie can do.

One would assume that the Capitals already figured that Lundqvist wasn’t likely to be available to them. That said, Lundqvist’s announcement comes before the 2021 NHL Trade Deadline. If the Capitals wanted some clarity before possibly trading for a veteran goalie, then this is added insight.

Hopefully Lundqvist can stay healthy, whether that means suiting up as an NHL goalie again, or not. He’s scheduled to be a UFA this offseason.

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.