Minnesota Wild veteran forward Zach Parise was a healthy scratch for Wednesday night's game against the Vegas Golden Knights, the first time that has happened during his nine seasons with the franchise and second time in his 16-year NHL career.
The only other scratch in Parise's career came in 2005 for non-injury reasons with the New Jersey Devils.
The benching Wednesday stemmed from Parise remaining on the ice too long during Monday's 5-4 overtime loss to Vegas. Parise stayed on during a line change in the final minute instead of exiting and the Golden Knights, using an extra attacker, tied the score with 42 seconds left and went on to win the game.
"It was disappointing and I don't agree with the decision," Parise told reporters Wednesday. "In my heart, I felt like I was doing the right thing."
Parise found out at Wednesday's day-game skating session that he wouldn't be playing in the rematch. He said Monday's incident was due to him wanting to help Marcus Foligno get a third goal for the hat trick.
"I asked Marcus after the second (period) if he ever had a hat trick. He had two goals up to that point. He said, 'No.' I said, 'Let's go get you one.' And then when they pulled the goalie, we were on the bench. And I said to him, 'If I get the puck, get up ice with me, I'm not going to shoot, I'm going to find you.'
"We were out there for a little bit. And Marcus had a little break. And I made the decision to try to join him to help him. They ended up getting the puck. And I saw (Foligno) change on the backcheck. I didn't think it'd be a good idea for me to change, too. So I stayed out there. And unfortunately, it was, I guess, the ultimate backfire that they ended up tying the game."
Wild coach Dean Evason said he addressed the decision with Parise in a one-on-one meeting.
"We're taking the livelihood away from them," Evason said of the decision. "We're taking away what they love to do and play the game."
The 36-year-old Parise has just nine points (three goals, six assists) in 19 games this season.
"It was just a slow start," Parise said. "Just a stretch where I wasn't getting a lot of looks. It's been a struggle for all the guys on the power play where the top guys get points and goals. That aside, we're winning games and that's been fun. Just where we are in the standings and how well we're playing, I think that trumps how frustrating it's been individually."
Parise has scored 195 goals in nine seasons with the Wild and has 389 in his career. He scored 194 in seven seasons with the New Jersey Devils (2005-12).
--Field Level Media