Parise clears air on perceived shot he took at U.S. coach


Minnesota Wild star Zach Parise is defending himself after comments he made following Team USA's loss to Finland in the bronze-medal game at the Olympics, saying his words were misinterpreted.

After the 5-0 blowout loss that sent the Americans home without a medal, Parise referred to the U.S. team's approach against Canada and Finland as "passive." Josh Yohe of the Tribune-Review in Pittsburgh thought Parise, who captained the United States, was taking a shot at the system head coach Dan Bylsma (Pittsburgh Penguins) used.

Parise tried to clarify his comments in an email to Michael Russo of the Star Tribune.

“I never took a shot at Dan and I never would,” he said in the email. “I said we were passive as a team, not playing a passive system. We seemed slow as a group that particular game [against Finland]. Dan did a great job coaching us and preparing us for all of the games, along with the other coaches. They put in a lot of work.

“He let us play and demanded us to work. He was always detailed in his approach and his meetings, and we were more than prepared from a scouting standpoint for each game.”

The air is now clear on the perceived issue.

Meanwhile, Parise, who was checked out by trainers after sustaining a hand injury against Finland, said he is fine and will be ready to play when the Wild returns to NHL action on Thursday against the Edmonton Oilers.

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