NHL

Parise's final stand as a Devil?

Hockey Primetime Bill Weisbrod
Share This Story

   
 

Zach Parise and the New Jersey Devils began the post-All Star break portion of the schedule firmly on the Eastern Conference’s playoff bubble, and for both the individual and the team, early returns have been positive.

In two home games in Newark through Friday, the Devils rallied for a shootout victory over the Rangers and a regulation win over the Canadiens. Those wins gave New Jersey 59 points, which is good for seventh — one point ahead of Toronto and one behind Ottawa — before Saturday's game against the Flyers.

Parise had three goals in those first two contests after the break. After a sluggish start to the season, the left wing has found his game at the right time. As coach Pete DeBoer said after the win over the Rangers, “we’re at that time of the year where they’re all big.”

But for the New Jersey captain, this spring's upcoming stretch drive is bigger than most.

Two months plus potential playoffs separate Parise, the Devils’ best homegrown player of the post-lockout era, from unrestricted free agency. A strong end to the 2011-12 season for Parise, however, could put him out of the team’s price range over the summer.

Parise will likely earn a raise on his current $6 million, one-year deal, and the size of that raise will be determined this spring.

The Devils, however, are facing financial issues unrelated to whethery they re-sign the 27-year-old star.

The team is currently $80 million in debt, and the NHL is providing it with early payment of some revenue. And co-owner Ray Chambers is reportedly trying to rid himself of his 47 percent share of the franchise.

At a practice this week, player representative David Clarkson said the team’s financial situation did not weigh heavily on the minds of players.

“I think everything figures itself out, somehow,” Clarkson told reporters. “The thing I know is that our locker room is the exact same as it was before. It doesn’t affect us as players. We just have to go out and continue to do our job."

celebrities at NHL games

WHAT A STAR

Even hot celebrities love cool NHL games. Check out these celebs at NHL games.

And it will not affect the Devils' personnel for the remainder of the season, either.

Mark Everson of the the New York Post reported Tuesday the team does not plan to trade Parise before the NHL trade deadline on Feb. 27.

That means he has until at least early April to create a few more winning memories for Devils fans before the reality of free agency sets in.

“We’ve got to move on and get prepared,” Parise said after the win over the Rangers. “Because it’s not going to be getting any easier.”

Tagged: Devils, Rangers, Zach Parise

Related Stories

Member Comments

Please note by clicking on "Post comment" you acknowledge that you have read the Terms of Use and the comment you are posting is in compliance with such terms. Be Polite. Inappropriate posts may be removed by the moderator.

powered by



Play Hockey Simulation Game on WhatIfSports

More Than Sports on MSN

Fox Sports Store

    itemName itemURL imageSrc price itemDescription
    Reebok Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins Premier Hockey Jersey - Black http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Pittsburgh_Penguins/browse/featuredproduct/175178/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_175000/FF_175178_xl.jpg&w=100 159.95 Reebok Sidney Crosby Pittsburgh Penguins Premier Hockey Jersey - Black
    Reebok Dallas Stars White Premier Hockey Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Dallas_Stars/browse/featuredproduct/243363/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_243000/FF_243363_xl.jpg&w=100 124.95 Reebok Dallas Stars White Premier Hockey Jersey
    Reebok Tampa Bay Lightning Primary Logo T-Shirt - Royal Blue http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Tampa_Bay_Lightning/browse/featuredproduct/301017/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_301000/ff_301017_xl.jpg&w=100 19.95 Reebok Tampa Bay Lightning Primary Logo T-Shirt - Royal Blue
    Majestic Anaheim Ducks Black Official Logo Full Zip Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Anaheim_Ducks/browse/featuredproduct/398322/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_398000/FF_398322_xl.jpg&w=100 43.99 Majestic Anaheim Ducks Black Official Logo Full Zip Hoodie Sweatshirt
    Detroit Red Wings Youth Black Southpaw Backpack http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Detroit_Red_Wings/browse/featuredproduct/403205/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_403000/FF_403205_xl.jpg&w=100 24.95 Detroit Red Wings Youth Black Southpaw Backpack
    Reebok Chicago Blackhawks #88 Patrick Kane Red Premier Hockey Jersey http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Chicago_Blackhawks/browse/featuredproduct/408123/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_408000/FF_408123_xl.jpg&w=100 159.95 Reebok Chicago Blackhawks #88 Patrick Kane Red Premier Hockey Jersey
    Majestic New Jersey Devils Red Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_Jersey_Devils/browse/featuredproduct/456774/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_456000/ff_456774_xl.jpg&w=100 47.99 Majestic New Jersey Devils Red Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt
    Vancouver Canucks 2011 NHL Western Conference Champions Hockey Stick http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_Vancouver_Canucks/browse/featuredproduct/665779/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_665000/ff_665779_xl.jpg&w=100 11.95 Vancouver Canucks 2011 NHL Western Conference Champions Hockey Stick
    Majestic New York Islanders Royal Blue Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt http://shop.foxsports.com/FOX_New_York_Islanders/browse/featuredproduct/752594/source/foxsports_prsp_ca http://images.footballfanatics.com/FFImage/thumb.aspx?i=/productImages/_752000/ff_752594_xl.jpg&w=100 47.99 Majestic New York Islanders Royal Blue Felt Tek Patch Pullover Hoodie Sweatshirt