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Rangers expect Jimmy Vesey to return against Jets

Rangers left wing Jimmy Vesey falls to the

Rangers left wing Jimmy Vesey falls to the ice after taking a hard hit on Saturday, Feb. 3, 2018, in Nashville, Tenn. Credit: AP / George Walker IV

Rangers forward Jimmy Vesey, who suffered a concussion on a head shot delivered by Nashville’s Filip Forsberg on Feb. 3, will return to the lineup Sunday in Winnipeg.

Vesey, who was sidelined for three games, practiced on a third line Saturday with center David Desharnais and right wing Jesper Fast, and head coach Alain Vigneault gave him the thumb’s up to play against the Jets in the first match of a two-game road trip. The Harvard grad has 10 goals and 17 points in 52 games in his second season in New York.

But backup goalie Ondrej Pavelec will not make the trip. After making seven saves on eight shots in the 4-3 win on Friday, Pavelec did not return for the second period. The team reported that he had a knee issue, and Vigneault said Saturday he was undergoing an MRI and did not yet know how long he would be out.

Rookie Alexandar Georgiev was called up from Hartford, where he had appeared in 31 games and had a 12-11-6 record, with a 2.97 GAA, .908 save percentage and two shutouts. Henrik Lundqvist is expected to play in Winnipeg.

Captain Ryan McDonagh, who has an upper-body injury that has lingered since the game in San Jose on Jan. 25 and did not dress on Friday, will not make the journey west, Vigneault confirmed.

New York Sports