2014 NHL Playoffs: Zach Parise's Clutch Play Can Negate Home-Ice Advantage In Game 7

By Brandon Fitzpatrick
Minnesota Wild playoffs
Brace Hemmelgarn-USA TODAY Sports

When the Minnesota Wild went out and signed Zach Parise to a lucrative contract 22 months ago, they envisioned a night like tonight. With the Wild trailing the Colorado Avalanche 3-2 in their series, Parise showed up big time, scoring two goals and adding two assists in the Wild’s 5-2 win, forcing a Game 7.

Parise has played excellent hockey in this series, and tonight was no different. His first goal, a deflection off a shot from Ryan Suter, game just 49 seconds into the game. It got the home crowd rocking and the Wild kept pouring on the pressure in the first 10 minutes of the game.

The Wild eventually went up 2-0, but the Avalanche fought back much like they have in most games this series. Parise’s second goal in the third period put the Wild ahead 3-2, putting the crowd into an absolute frenzy.

The Avalanche pulled their goalie with 2:44 left, but it did not matter as the Wild held on to force a decisive Game 7. The star of this game was Parise. He was all over the ice making plays defensively, blocking shots on the penalty kill, as well as putting up four points. He is a big-time performer and one of the most clutch players in the NHL.

The series is heading back to Denver for Game 7 Wednesday night. The home team has won every game in this series, but if Parise plays like he did tonight, home ice won’t matter too much. Game 7 should be epic, just like this series.

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