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Parise status still unknown for Wednesday

Tuesday, 03.29.2011 / 2:22 PM / News
By Eric Marin
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Parise status still unknown for Wednesday
Parise confident he'll play this week. GETTY IMAGES
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It turns out Zach Parise will need a little more time to determine whether he’ll play Wednesday against the Islanders.

He planned on discussing it with team staff Tuesday afternoon, and said he would know sometime before Wednesday morning. He expects to play this week, when the Devils play three home games in four nights.

Philadelphia visits on Friday, followed by Montreal on Saturday.

“One of these next three I think I’ll be able to play,” Parise said after Tuesday's practice. He underwent arthroscopic knee surgery in November and has missed 63 games.

He reported feeling good after his third full team practice, and skated with Travis Zajac and Nick Palmieri.

“It was OK,” Parise said. “It was definitely nice to get another practice in. It felt good. I felt good out there. Again, the pace, I think I’m adjusting a little better to it. We’ll see.”

Even though the Devils trail the eighth-place Sabres by 12 points with seven games to go, Parise's counting on getting back in the lineup when he can.

“I would like to, just for your own state of mind, peace of mind, it would definitely be nice to play,” he said. “That’s what I want to get out of the last few games, just to feel good about it going into the summer.”

Still, Parise doesn’t want the injury to be in the back of his mind when takes the ice for his next game.

“My biggest thing is wanting to be able to play a game and only concentrating on the game and not worrying about my knee, not worrying about my timing,” he said. “I understand that the pace is going to be tough to start with, of course. But I want injury to be the last thing on my mind because you can leave yourself pretty vulnerable when you’re concerned with things like that. So I don’t want that to be a worry.”

As every player will attest, practices are different than games, when they have to be ready for anything.

“I guess what it comes down to is, when you’re playing a game, not so much in practice, but when you’re playing a game, you put your body in positions that you normally don’t do and you don’t do in practice. Everything is so much reaction, you have to make sure you’re comfortable and your body’s OK with if you get knocked down funny. You have to make sure it’s not going to hurt like that. That’s my biggest concern right now.”

He sounded certain of at least one thing: that the decision wouldn’t wait until morning.

“For my own sake, I would know today,” he said. “Whether that means you guys know today, I don’t know. But I would know, personally, today. I like to know the day before, I don’t see myself ever waking up, ‘Well, let’s go and see how it feels in pre-game skate,' because pre-game skate’s nothing really. I think I’ll know today, how it feels a few hours after we skate, how my body reacts to skating.”

Jacques Lemaire doesn’t have to see any more of Parise to make up his mind, and thought his left winger has looked sharp. That’s not to say Parise wouldn’t take the chance to practice again Thursday and push back his return to Friday.

“He’s getting better and better,” said Lemaire. “I don’t know if he’s going to play [Wednesday].”

If he had to guess?

“If I had to guess, I think it’d be his guess,” said the coach. “I would have to talk to him and see what his guess is, and I would take the same guess.”

For Parise, there’s nothing at stake except the opportunity to see game action without having to wait until October.

“I don’t think if I don’t play the rest of the year it’s going to hurt anything,” he said. “If I do play, I don’t think it’s going to help anything either way. I guess right now it’s just to get myself feeling good about playing again.”

As for whether or not this experience has given him a better appreciation for what’s involved with long-term injury, Parise responded, “Yeah, and I don’t want to appreciate it anymore. That’s enough. I prefer not to do that again.”

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  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 p - BOS 82 54 19 9 261 177 117
2 y - PIT 82 51 24 7 249 207 109
3 x - TBL 82 46 27 9 240 215 101
4 x - MTL 82 46 28 8 215 204 100
5 x - NYR 82 45 31 6 218 193 96
6 x - PHI 82 42 30 10 236 235 94
7 x - CBJ 82 43 32 7 231 216 93
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10 NJD 82 35 29 18 197 208 88
11 OTT 82 37 31 14 236 265 88
12 TOR 82 38 36 8 231 256 84
13 CAR 82 36 35 11 207 230 83
14 NYI 82 34 37 11 225 267 79
15 FLA 82 29 45 8 196 268 66
16 BUF 82 21 51 10 157 248 52

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2013-2014 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
J. Jagr 82 24 43 16 67
P. Elias 65 18 35 -4 53
T. Zajac 80 18 30 3 48
A. Henrique 77 25 18 3 43
M. Zidlicky 81 12 30 -3 42
M. Ryder 82 18 16 -6 34
A. Greene 82 8 24 3 32
E. Gelinas 60 7 22 -3 29
D. Zubrus 82 13 13 1 26
R. Clowe 43 7 19 -10 26
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
C. Schneider 16 15 12 .921 1.97
M. Brodeur 19 14 6 .901 2.51

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