NEW YORK -- New York Rangers goalie Henrik Lundqvist will not dress for the game against the New York Islanders at Madison Square Garden on Sunday (MSG+2, MSG, NHL.TV), coach Alain Vigneault said. He is still considered day-to-day with neck spasms.
Antti Raanta will start for the second straight game. Magnus Hellberg, who was with the team Sunday morning, is expected to be recalled from Hartford on an emergency basis to serve as Raanta's backup as he did against the Washington Capitals on Friday.
Hellberg was sent back to Hartford after the game Friday, but can be recalled again on an emergency basis and it will not count against the four call-ups the Rangers have available to them for the rest of the season, according to terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.
Rangers defenseman Marc Staal will not play because of back spasms.
Staal missed the game against the Pittsburgh Penguins on Thursday because of the flu. He played against the Washington Capitals on Friday, but Vigneault said the flu triggered his back spasms and he was having trouble moving around when he arrived at the Garden on Sunday.
Dylan McIlrath will replace Staal in the lineup.
Lundqvist skated Sunday morning prior to the Rangers' full morning skate. He took shots from goalie coach Benoit Allaire and left the ice when the rest of the team started to come on.
Lundqvist was injured against the Penguins when Rangers defenseman Ryan McDonagh collided with him. He did not dress for the game Friday either.
Forward Rick Nash, who also skated Sunday prior to the rest of the team, could return to practice this week, Vigneault said. Nash has been out since Jan. 22 with a bone bruise in his left leg.