Michael Russo's Sunday Insider: Straight talk on Parise

  • Article by: MICHAEL RUSSO , Star Tribune
  • Updated: February 5, 2012 - 1:40 AM

A Wild trade for the Devils star seems unlikely. But the team could still make a run at him if he becomes a free agent.


There's a strong chance that New Jersey doesn't trade star forward Zach Parise.

Photo: Julio Cortez, Associated Press

CameraStar Tribune photo galleries

Cameraview larger

Maybe I'm partially to blame for creating the mass Zach Parise hysteria going on in the Twin Cities right now because for two years, maybe three, I've identified this upcoming summer as the year the Wild would (and should) pursue the star forward if he becomes a free agent.

But lately, because the trade deadline is Feb. 27, fans are salivating over arguably the best American, let alone Minnesotan, out there.

Everywhere I turn, it's Parise this, Parise that. My e-mail basket. My Twitter account. My radio interviews. The Lund's salad bar.

"You know he bought a house in Orono?"

"My girlfriend is friends with his second cousin and he says Zach wants to come home."

"Did you hear him on KFAN the other day? He told Paul Allen ..."

I'm not one to lecture, but folks, step into a sauna, let out your inner Finn and relax. If Parise gets to July 1, one assumes Chuck Fletcher will be beating down his door like 20 other general managers.

But if you're holding your breath for the trade that puts Parise in a Wild sweater, you're probably going to turn blue.

First of all, there's a tremendous chance the New Jersey Devils don't trade him. They're a pretty good team. You look at what they've done the past two months, they're as good as anybody in the East maybe with the exception of Boston.

Plus, my gut says Lou Lamoriello is in the final days of his incredible run as New Jersey's GM. To be blunt, I don't think he's too interested in building for the future, so if that means losing Parise for nothing as a free agent rather than adding a boatload of assets, so be it.

He's done it before with Scott Niedermayer and Paul Martin.

Second, I can't see Fletcher blowing up the stable of prospects he and his staff have worked so hard to build to acquire anybody.

Parise wants to win. If he indeed becomes a free agent, one of the Wild's chief selling points in trying to persuade him to sign long-term here rather than with Detroit or L.A. or San Jose or Toronto or somebody else will be what the Wild believes is its bright future because of all those upper-echelon kids.

If the Wild dished away a large piece of that pie, do you really believe that returning home to Minnesota will be enough to make Parise commit a large chunk of his career to playing here?

I mean, I know Minnesota's the greatest place on Earth and all, but ...

So, ... be more patient, hope he becomes a free agent and if he does, on July 1, you can sit on pins and needles and pray the Wild's sales pitch is better than half the league's.

In the meantime, we'll see if Fletcher can accomplish something before Feb. 27.

Again, he's not about to trade away guys like Mikael Granlund, Jonas Brodin, Johan Larsson and Charlie Coyle. The objective has always been to build a team that can contend annually, and he won't deviate from that to get eighth place.

Now, that doesn't mean all the prospects are untouchable -- hence, the Casey Wellman-for-Erik Christensen deal. That doesn't mean he won't trade picks, especially since he always seems to find a way to juggle and get them back. And that doesn't mean he wouldn't deal some of his free-agents-to-be.

But look, he wouldn't trade for Jeff Carter in-season, so douse that fire with all your friends. The Wild likes Carolina's Tuomo Ruutu, but not for the current asking price. If it wanted Buffalo's Brad Boyes, it could have traded for him last year. Word is Derek Roy's shoulder (and contract) is a concern and Drew Stafford may be too streaky for his ticket.

Believe me, the Wild wants to make the playoffs. The Wild would love another top-six forward or puck-moving defenseman. The problem is half the league is looking for the same thing.

It's a pretty cruel game of musical chairs right now, and there's not enough chairs to go around.

  • related content

  • The Wild's week ahead

    Sunday February 5, 2012

    Tuesday: at Columbus, 6 p.m. (FSN). Thursday: vs. Vancouver, 7 p.m. (FSN). Saturday: vs. Columbus, 7 p.m. (FSN).Player to watch:...

  • Michael Russo's short takes: Feb. 5

    Sunday February 5, 2012

    Trade rumorsWith the trade deadline three weeks away, rumors are running rampant. Take Tuomo Ruutu, the Carolina forward and Wild...

  • get related content delivered to your inbox

  • manage my email subscriptions


Toronto - LP: D. Hutchison 2 FINAL
NY Yankees - WP: M. Tanaka 5
Washington - WP: S. Strasburg 2 FINAL
Miami - LP: N. Eovaldi 1
NY Mets 7 Bottom 8th Inning
Atlanta 2
Boston 3 Top 9th Inning
Baltimore 2
Milwaukee - LP: W. Peralta 0 FINAL
Pittsburgh - WP: V. Worley 1
Chicago WSox 10 Top 8th Inning
Tampa Bay 3
Cleveland 7 Bottom 6th Inning
Minnesota 2
Detroit 2 Top 6th Inning
Kansas City 4
Seattle 3 Bottom 6th Inning
Houston 4
Los Angeles 5 Top 6th Inning
Chicago Cubs 4
Texas 0 Bottom 3rd Inning
LA Angels 0
Philadelphia 1 Bottom 1st Inning
Oakland 0
San Francisco 0 Bottom 1st Inning
San Diego 0
Arizona 0 Top 2nd Inning
Colorado 0
Cincinnati - A. Simon 7:05 PM
St. Louis - L. Lynn
San Diego 22 FINAL
Buffalo 10
Dallas 34 FINAL
St. Louis 31
Washington 34 4th Qtr 2:48
Philadelphia 37
Houston 17 FINAL
NY Giants 30
Minnesota 9 FINAL
New Orleans 20
Tennessee 7 FINAL
Cincinnati 33
Baltimore 23 FINAL
Cleveland 21
Green Bay 7 FINAL
Detroit 19
Indianapolis 44 FINAL
Jacksonville 17
Oakland 9 FINAL
New England 16
San Francisco 7 1st Qtr 6:45
Arizona 3
Denver 3:25 PM
Kansas City 3:25 PM
Pittsburgh 7:30 PM
Chicago 9/22/14 7:30 PM
NY Jets
NY Giants 9/25/14 7:25 PM
Columbus 4 FINAL
Carolina 3
Buffalo 4:00 PM
St. Louis 5:30 PM
Calgary 7:00 PM
Edmonton 7:00 PM
Old Dominion 45 FINAL
Rice 42
Troy 0 FINAL
(12) Georgia 66
Georgia Tech 27 FINAL
Virginia Tech 24
Eastern Mich 14 FINAL
(9) Michigan State 73
Iowa 24 FINAL
Pittsburgh 20
Bowling Green 17 FINAL
(19) Wisconsin 68
Maryland 34 FINAL
Syracuse 20
Tulane 13 FINAL
Duke 47
Hawaii 12 FINAL
Colorado 21
Marshall 48 FINAL
Akron 17
North Carolina 41 FINAL
(23) East Carolina 70
Army 21 FINAL
Wake Forest 24
Virginia 33 FINAL
(20) BYU 41
(6) Texas A&M 58 FINAL
Rutgers 31 FINAL
Navy 24
Central Mich 10 FINAL
Kansas 24
Utah 26 FINAL
Michigan 10
Florida 21 FINAL
(3) Alabama 42
Louisville 34 FINAL
Fla Atlantic 19 FINAL
Wyoming 20
Indiana 31 FINAL
Missouri 27
San Jose St 7 FINAL
Minnesota 24
Texas State 35 FINAL
Illinois 42
Massachusetts 7 FINAL
Penn State 48
Georgia State 14 FINAL
Washington 45
Appalachian St 20 FINAL
Southern Miss 21
(14) Miss State 34 FINAL
(17) LSU 29
Northern Ill 14 FINAL
Arkansas 52
Middle Tennessee 17 FINAL
Memphis 36
Utah State 14 FINAL
Arkansas State 21
Miami-Ohio 24 FINAL
Cincinnati 31
Idaho 24 FINAL
Ohio U 36
Ball State 23 FINAL
Toledo 34
(13) So Carolina 48 FINAL
Vanderbilt 34
(4) Oklahoma 45 FINAL
West Virginia 33
Ga Southern 28 FINAL
South Alabama 6
Houston 47
Miami-Florida 31 FINAL
(21) Nebraska 41
New Mexico 38 FINAL
New Mexico St 35
Clemson 17 FINAL
(1) Florida State 23
California 45 FINAL
Arizona 49
San Diego St 7 FINAL
Oregon State 28
(2) Oregon 38 FINAL
Washington St 31
Louisiana 9 FINAL
Boise State 34
Texas Tech 9/25/14 6:30 PM
(24) Oklahoma State
Appalachian St 9/25/14 6:30 PM
Ga Southern
(11) UCLA 9/25/14 9:00 PM
(15) Arizona State
Middle Tennessee 9/26/14 7:00 PM
Old Dominion
Fresno State 9/26/14 7:00 PM
New Mexico
Texas-El Paso 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(25) Kansas State
Tennessee 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(12) Georgia
Vanderbilt 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Wyoming 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(9) Michigan State
Northwestern 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Penn State
TCU 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Iowa 9/27/14 11:00 AM
Tulane 9/27/14 11:00 AM
So Florida 9/27/14 11:00 AM
(19) Wisconsin
Colorado State 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Boston College
Western Mich 9/27/14 11:30 AM
Virginia Tech
Maryland 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Akron 9/27/14 12:30 PM
Bowling Green 9/27/14 2:00 PM
Arkansas 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(6) Texas A&M
Kent State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Western Ky 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Minnesota 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Wake Forest 9/27/14 2:30 PM
FIU 9/27/14 2:30 PM
(1) Florida State 9/27/14 2:30 PM
NC State
Miami-Ohio 9/27/14 2:30 PM
Colorado 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Louisiana Tech 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(5) Auburn
Texas 9/27/14 3:00 PM
Temple 9/27/14 3:00 PM
(16) Stanford 9/27/14 3:15 PM
TX-San Antonio 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Fla Atlantic
South Alabama 9/27/14 4:00 PM
Cincinnati 9/27/14 5:00 PM
(22) Ohio State
Rice 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Southern Miss
Missouri 9/27/14 6:00 PM
(13) So Carolina
Boise State 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Air Force
North Carolina 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Central Mich 9/27/14 6:00 PM
Troy 9/27/14 6:00 PM
New Mexico St 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(17) LSU
Memphis 9/27/14 6:30 PM
(10) Ole Miss
Duke 9/27/14 6:30 PM
Texas State 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Washington St 9/27/14 7:00 PM
(8) Notre Dame 9/27/14 7:00 PM
(7) Baylor 9/27/14 7:00 PM
Iowa State
UNLV 9/27/14 7:00 PM
San Diego St
Illinois 9/27/14 8:00 PM
(21) Nebraska
Oregon State 9/27/14 9:30 PM
(18) USC
Nevada 9/27/14 9:30 PM
San Jose St
Chivas USA 0 2nd Half 35:00
Toronto FC 3
Toronto 40 FINAL
Brt Columbia 23
Edmonton 23 FINAL
Hamilton 25
Calgary 15 FINAL
Montreal 31
Ottawa 0 9:00
Saskatchewan 0
Connect with twitterConnect with facebookConnect with Google+Connect with PinterestConnect with PinterestConnect with RssfeedConnect with email newsletters





question of the day

Poll: Which local pro team are you most excited about?

Weekly Question