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Zach Parise is over illness, feels ready to play Saturday night for Wild

November 17, 2018

Zach Parise announced he was no longer contagious in the Wild locker room, after practice Friday at TRIA Rink.

At least, he thinks so. Hes not quite sure of the science behind that statement.

But based on feeling, hes good to go for Saturday evenings game against the Buffalo Sabres at Xcel Energy Center.

It was a tough day [Thursday], but I feel better, Parise said of missing the most recent game, a 6-2 beating of Vancouver. Unfortunately the last couple years, I think Ive gotten kind of used to [watching from home while injured]. But its always a weird feeling at home watching the guys. Youre looking at the clock, you kind of know what you should be doing at that time in getting ready for the game. So yeah, its never fun.

Parise said he felt OK at practice Friday and anticipated feeling even closer to full health for the game Saturday. Therefore, playing in the second of the back-to-back Sunday in Chicago should not be unrealistic.

Unless his kids bring home any more germs.

Each one of them were sick last week, so I figured it was just a matter of time, Parise said. With my immune system, I was kind of anticipating being sick.

Hendricks brings a cant miss presence

With Parise unavailable, Matt Hendricks played his first game since Nov. 6 and seventh this season on Thursday. The veteran forward endured a leg injury early on that sidelined his season, but Parise said Hendricks is a good penalty killer who also performs well on draws.

He struggled in some parts of the game, but hes such an emotional guy for us on the bench, Wild coach Bruce Boudreau said. His puck-handling probably wasnt as smooth as youd like it to be, but that comes with continuing playing.

What Hendricks brings to the team off the ice might be more important than what he provides on it, though, as he took up a leadership role in the game Parise missed.

Hes just a good presence to have around because hes a good person. Hes a good guy in the locker room. Hes active. Hes vocal on the bench, which helps at different times throughout the game, Parise said.

You can tell hes engaged in the game, whether hes playing a lot or not. You can tell he cares about his teammates, and he wants to see everyone succeed. And I think he feels like his part is to be vocal and be positive, supportive. So he does a really good job of that.

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