Rumor: Zach Parise scratched for Game 1 of the Stanley Cup playoffs.

A huge decision from Dean Evason.


Say what you will about Minnesota Wild head coach Dean Evason, one thing you cannot deny is that the man has the courage to make extremely bold decisions at the time when they matter most. 

Although there has been no official announcement as of yet on the part of the Minnesota Wild, it would now appear as though the team is set to sit one of their highest paid players as they head into the first round of the Stanley Cup playoffs. On Saturday the Wild participated in what will be their final practice before they travel to Las Vegas, ahead of their first round series against the Golden Knights, and notably absent from the forward lines rushes was star forward Zach Parise.

Here's how the line rushes broke down on Saturday:

Foligno - Ek - Greenway

Kaprizov - Hartman - Zucc

Fiala - Rask - Johansson 

Bonino - Sturm- Bjugstad

As I'm sure you've already noticed, Parise is notably absent from that list and there's good reason to suspect that Evason has decided to leave him on the sidelines when the most important games of the season begin. The Wild had coach has opted to greatly diminish Parise's role on the team over the course of the regular season and has even made Parise a healthy scratch on multiple occasions already. That being said as the Wild's all time leading scorer in the playoffs, the decision to leave Parise on the sidelines will no doubt seem a controversial one to many.

Leaving your all time leading scorer in the Stanley Cup playoffs in the press box is never an easy decision, but doing so when that player counts for over $7.5 million of your cap space makes it even more bold on the part of Evason. Evason's job however is to field the best possible team, regardless of how much each player is earning on an individual basis, and anyone who has watched the Wild closely this season will tell you that it is clear Evason no longer feels that Parise is among that group of players.

No doubt Parise himself is not happy with the direction Evason has taken the team this season, and it will be very interesting to see how this all plays out in the offseason if he continues to be left aside by his head coach.

Update: It is now official: