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“You need your big players to play, and we didn’t produce in the playoffs,” Parise said. “It makes it tough for your team to win when the guy’s that you’re relying on don’t produce. It makes it for a long offseason. It’s not a fun feeling.
“I respect the way Mikko plays. He plays hard and plays the right way. I enjoy playing with him, but to really be an elite line in this league, I think we have to get better and hopefully we will.”
Parise believes Jason Pominville, whom the Wild is trying to sign to an extension, will help the line.
“He’s a smart player, he scores and he makes other players better,’’ Parise said. ‘‘He was such a big pickup for us, and hopefully he stays here for a long time.”
Father to be
It’ll be a busy year for Parise. His wife, Alisha, is pregnant with twins, a boy and girl due in January. After winning silver at the 2010 Winter Olympics, Parise again will represent the United States in Sochi, Russia, in February.
Oh, and he’ll play the Devils twice — Nov. 3 at home and returning to Newark, N.J., for the first time March 20.
Last season, Nashville Predators fans constantly booed Suter during his return, and the team didn’t acknowledge Suter, something it had done previously for returning players.
“Trust me, I’m not expecting a tribute when I go back [to New Jersey]. I’m not expecting them to dim the lights down,” Parise said, laughing. “That’s what I respect about the Devils. It’s ‘team’ there and they do a fantastic job of getting everybody to buy into it.
“It was pretty hostile down there in Nashville. Will they boo me in Jersey? I don’t know. I’m sure there are a lot of mixed feelings and I understand that. But the fans were awesome to me when I was there.”
Ready for a run
Parise will be happy to get both meetings over with. Then, he can officially turn the page to Minnesota.
All he wants to do is win here.
“This is such a good sports city and sports state, how they support the Twins and Vikings and Wild,” Parise said. “I think winning here would be incredible. Hockey is everything here.
“I remember up at North Dakota in college watching the Wild’s ’03 run to the conference finals. I thought our dorms were going to collapse when Bruno [Andrew Brunette] scored in overtime [to beat Colorado]. That’s what I want to experience here. The support the team gets only quadruples as you run through the playoffs and everyone catches the fever.
“There’s nothing like the fun you have playing in a sold-out building with supportive fans.”
|Tennessee||28||4th Qtr 4:39|
|St. Louis||10||4th Qtr 4:27|
|Seattle||17||4th Qtr 6:20|
|NY Giants||14||4th Qtr 6:56|
|Dallas||12/9/13 7:40 PM|
|San Diego||12/12/13 7:25 PM|
|San Jose||0||2nd Prd 14:53|
|Boston||0||1st Prd 19:14|
|Washington||0||1st Prd 19:17|
|Florida||0||1st Prd 19:27|
|SW Oklahoma St||55||FINAL|
|San Diego St||70|
|Oregon||76||2nd Half 2:38|
|TX-Permian Basin||63||2nd Half 5:26|
|Jacksonville St||26||2nd Half 15:49|
|Boston College||3||1st Half 18:19|
|Seton Hall||7:00 PM|
|Eastern Wash||7:30 PM|
|(13) Oklahoma State||24|
|(16) Arizona State||14|
|(1) Florida State||45|
|(7) Ohio State||24||FINAL|
|(4) Michigan State||34|
|(21) Fresno State||24|
|Army||12/14/13 2:00 PM|
|(10) Penn State||77||FINAL|
|Central Conn St||82||FINAL|
|(12) South Carolina||76||FINAL|
|Cal State Fullerton||52||FINAL|
|(20) Iowa State||79|
|Stephen F Austin||83||FINAL|
|Long Beach St||67||FINAL|
Poll: What's the best sports rivalry involving a Twin Cities sports team?