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Sick surprise: Lundqvist isn’t playing for Sweden

World Cup Of Hockey 2016 - Team Sweden Practice

TORONTO, ON - SEPTEMBER 15: Henrik Lundqvist #30 of Team Sweden gloves the puck during practice at the World Cup of Hockey 2016 at Air Canada Centre on September 15, 2016 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. (Photo by Minas Panagiotakis/Getty Images)

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Well, this was unexpected: Henrik Lundqvist is not in Sweden’s lineup for their World Cup of Hockey opener against Russia on Sunday.

Team representatives announced that the all-world goaltender is dealing with an illness, according to multiple reporters including Dan Rosen of

Jacob Markstrom is getting the start for Sweden with Jhonas Enroth serving as a backup.

For all the starting goalie debates we’ve seen in this still-young tournament, it’s safe to say that the drop-off is steepest between Sweden’s top and other choices.

Russia’s firepower would have been a test even for Lundqvist. Now Sweden really needs to pull together, especially if Lundqvist needs to miss multiple games.