In case you missed it, I filled in for Dan Barreiro on KFAN (100.3-FM) on Wednesday and Wild left wing Zach Parise was one of my guests.
Parise, who missed the playoffs with a herniated disk, provided an update on his health. He has been skating and working out for weeks and on Wednesday, as a standard practice for all NHLers participating in the World Cup of Hockey, had a series of doctor appointments to get cleared.
“I feel really good,” Parise, who leaves for USA Hockey’s training camp on Sept. 4, said. “All the rehab went and is going well. I’m happy with the progress. The doctors were really happy today. … I’m really happy with it. I’m good to go.”
Parise said he’s happy to put the questions to rest. “I’m glad it’s over. I’m glad we can hopefully move on.”
Parise said it was never a question in his mind whether he’d take part in the World Cup as long as he was cleared to play and ready to play. He said with the uncertain future of NHLers taking part in the Winter Olympics, he doesn’t know how many more chances he’ll have to represent his country.
Wild coach Bruce Boudreau, who will join me at the Star Tribune booth at the State Fair on Monday at 3:15 p.m., has indicated that the Wild will play it safe at times with Parise this season and manage his back. He has hinted that there may be busy times during the season where he asks Parise to take it easy and not practice.
Parise doesn’t feel this will be an issue though, saying, "I feel better when I practice. I feel better when I play. Some people like to be away from the rink and they feel rested. I feel the opposite. I feel like garbage when I don’t go and skate.”
Asked if he’s confident the injury is completely behind him or fears this could be an ongoing issue, Parise said, “My MRI looked fantastic today” and that the doctors have told him, “I’m no more susceptible right now than you are of getting a herniated disk. So for me that was good news. I’m not concerned about taking a hit and [I’m not] worried it’s going to happen again. If it happens, it happens. But I’m not concerned that because it already happened that it’s going to happen again.”
-- A couple other housekeeping items:
As I mentioned, Boudreau will join me at the Star Tribune booth on Monday at 3:15 p.m. for a Q and A. You all are very much invited and are welcome to ask the new coach questions as well. The plan is to also stream the event live on Facebook at https://www.facebook.com/startribunesports, so "LIKE" the page now.
Also, "LIKE" my Facebook page at www.facebook.com/startribunemikerusso.
-- Wild preseason tickets are now on sale. Regular-season single-game tickets will go on sale Saturday, Sept. 24 at 9 a.m. at the Xcel Energy Center box office and at noon that day through ticketmaster.com.
-- Also, FOX Sports North, in conjunction with the Wild, will host a “Wild Town Hall” on Tuesday at 7:00 p.m. with Wild owner Craig Leipold, GM Chuck Fletcher and Boudreau. The broadcast event will be televised live on FOX Sports North PLUS.
Hosted from Xcel Energy Center, the event will be moderated by Anthony LaPanta with Kevin Gorg reporting. The press release says the “Wild Town Hall” will focus on a variety of topics, including the impact of the new coaching staff, an in-depth look at the roster and discussion about the future of the team.
The show will also re-air on FOX Sports North following the Twins game Tuesday evening.
Training camp opens Sept. 22, so daily (or several times daily) blogs and articles will be back soon.
Hope to see you at the State Fair on Monday.