Wild's Parise takes leave to be with ailing father
Minnesota Wild winger Zach Parise (11) controls the puck against San Jose Sharks defenceman Mirco Mueller (41) during NHL play at SAP Center in San Jose. (Kyle Terada/USA TODAY Sports)
As his father battles lung cancer, Minnesota Wild left winger Zach Parise has elected to take some time away from the team to be with family.
Less than an hour before Tuesday night's home game with the San Jose Sharks, the Wild announced that Parise would not be in the lineup.
"Zach Parise will not play in tonight's game against San Jose," the Wild said in a statement. "The Wild supports his decision to be with his family as his dad, J.P., battles lung cancer and asks that their privacy be respected. Our thoughts and prayers are with the entire Parise family during this difficult time."
J.P., 73, played parts of nine seasons with the Minnesota North Stars, as well as with four other NHL teams, and settled his family in the Twin Cities after retiring. Diagnosed with Stage IV lung cancer a year ago, he had recently made the decision to stop receiving chemotherapy.
Zach Parise is tied for the Wild lead in goals with 14 in 32 games.