The Wild’s wait to have franchise cornerstone Zach Parise back in the lineup might get longer.
Parise, who had hoped to make his season debut Friday at Winnipeg, left Monday’s practice at St. Thomas Arena after about 25 minutes. Coach Bruce Boudreau acknowledged that Parise had a setback with an unspecified injury.
“I don’t know how much of a setback or anything,” Boudreau said. “I know I talked to him before practice, and he felt great. That’s why he was in a red color [jersey] and was ready to go. The next thing I know, somebody told me he went off. I don’t know why he went off. Obviously, something didn’t feel right.”
Parise had been on a line with Eric Staal and Joel Eriksson Ek, but after Parise left, Boudreau had to move defenseman Gustav Olofsson onto that line.
Besides Parise, the Wild have been decimated with injuries to forwards Mikael Granlund (groin), Charlie Coyle (broken right fibula), Nino Niederreiter (high left ankle sprain) and Marcus Foligno (broken facial bone).
With the reinforcements sent back to Iowa, the Wild had assistant coach Darby Hendrickson suit up for Monday’s practice.
Granlund, who has been out since Oct. 6, looked strong skating before Monday’s practice. He was expected to miss this weekend’s games at Winnipeg and Calgary, but Fletcher said that’s “not necessarily” the plan anymore. It sounds like Granlund could be available sooner.
Foligno could be ready to play Friday, as Fletcher said he is close to returning to practice and will have a full cage face mask for protection.