Rangers' Staal sidelined with headaches

Headaches will keep New York Rangers defenceman and alternate captain Marc Staal from playing in his team's training camp scrimmages or the three North American exhibition games the Blueshirts are scheduled to play.

New York Rangers defenceman Marc Staal will miss training camp scrimmages and three exhibition games before the Blueshirts head to Europe as a precautionary measure after suffering from headaches during off-season workouts.

"He's progressing nicely," Rangers’ coach John Tortorella told reporters at the team's practice facility in Greenburgh, New York. "We just want to be cautious and get him ready for the regular season. The past four days he's feeling better during workouts. We want him to feel better consistently. He could have contact. We're holding him out. In the summertime, when he was ramping up his workouts, he started feeling it."

The 24-year-old missed three games last season following a hit by his brother, Eric Staal, captain of the Carolina Hurricanes.

There is no word yet on whether Staal will suit up for his team’s exhibition games or the two regular season games in Europe, part of the NHL Premiere Series to kick off the 2011-12 campaign.

Staal – one of the Rangers’ alternate captains – averaged 25:44 in ice time, tops among New York players.