The ultimate teammate, praise for Quick goes beyond on-ice accomplishments

After recently setting the NHL record for the most wins by an American netminder, Jonathan Quick’s current and former teammates share all the ways the goalie stands out – on and off the ice.

The ultimate teammate, praise for Quick goes beyond on-ice accomplishments

Feature Photo: Getty Images

Whether it is making strong first impressions on new teammates or leaving lasting ones behind, words of praise for record-setting Jonathan Quick are never in short supply.

Days after Quick made hockey history by becoming the winningest American-born NHL goalie with his 392nd win, teammates past and present offered up praise for the 38-year-old New York Rangers netminder.

“He just hates to lose games and winning was always his number one priority,” said Los Angeles Kings captain Anze Kopitar, who played with Quick for the better part of 15 seasons before the netminder was traded to the Vegas Golden Knights in 2023.

“Always a team-first guy.”

Kings forward Blake Lizotte, who played four seasons with Quick, views him in similar terms.

“Quickie is the ultimate competitor and teammate,” noted Lizotte.

“His drive to win, not only in games but in practice too, made everyone better at all times. He is relentless and will do whatever it takes to win just about anything where a score is kept.

“I believe that is what makes him the best American goalie of all time.”

Quick, originally from Connecticut, made 27 saves in the March 30 milestone victory over the Arizona Coyotes.

Quick came to the Blueshirts last July as an unrestricted free agent and is currently playing in his 16th NHL season.

Teaming with Igor Shesterkin to form one of the league’s top goaltending tandems, Quick has played a pivotal role in helping the Rangers reside in the upper echelon of the Eastern Conference standings.

“He has come in and been a great teammate and inclusive to everyone,” said Rangers defenceman Adam Fox.

“He has had a Hall of Fame career but came in with no ego and has worked hard to help our team be in the position we are in.”

Quick, who was drafted in the third round by Los Angeles in the 2005 NHL Draft, is the Kings all-time wins leader with 370 regular-season victories and 49 playoff wins. His stellar performances with the club helped lead the Kings to a pair of Stanley Cups in 2012 and 2014, where he earned a Conn Smythe Trophy in the former.

Quick added another Cup ring with the Vegas Golden Knights last spring.

“What I love about Quickie is that he always wanted to compete in practice and especially the games,” said Vegas forward Jonathan Marchessault.

“But he was also so happy for the success of his teammates and the team.”

The two-time William M. Jennings Trophy winner spent two seasons at the University of Massachusetts before suiting up in the ECHL and the American Hockey League.

Quick made his NHL debut against the Buffalo Sabres on Dec. 6, 2007, turning aside 15 of 17 shots for the first win that he would build off to make history.

His historic March 30 victory saw him surpass fellow American and former Sabres netminder, Ryan Miller.

But it isn’t only what he has achieved between the pipes that earns kudos from those who have played with Quick.

Words of praise also extend to the backstopper’s family, including his wife, Jaclyn.

“He and his family love each other,” said Lizotte. “He cares for his teammates with that same passion.

“He makes you feel comfortable no matter who you are. Whether it is a Thanksgiving meal at their house, or just a few encouraging words to get out of a slump, that’s what he is all about.”

With the 2023-24 Stanley Cup Playoffs on the horizon, teammates, past and present, know exactly what to expect from the record-setting man behind the mask.

“No matter what, Quickie is always there for his family and his teammates,” said Lizotte.

“To say I had the opportunity to know him and play with him is an honour.”