It's been a pretty good week for Zach Parise. He's healthy again after missing time with a broken foot. He's in the middle of a ridiculous hot stretch, scoring three goals and seven points in his past two games. And today, the Wild star was named captain of the U.S. men's hockey team for the upcoming Winter Games in Sochi.
"Number one, to be named to the team is awesome,” Parise said. "But it’s a special thing to be named captain. I know a majority of the guys wear a letter with their own team and there are going to be plenty of guys capable of doing it."
Parise doesn't wear the C with the Wild, but that wasn't an issue for coach Dan Byslma. "He plays exactly the way we want Team USA to play. He has a work ethic, a never-quit determination, an abrasiveness. And it's every time, regardless of score or situation."
Parise was a beast for the U.S. at the 2010 Olympics in Vancouver, tying for the team lead with eight points and scoring one of the most dramatic goals in American hockey history. Ryan Suter, Parise's teammate in Minnesota, and the Kings' Dustin Brown were named as Team USA's alternate captains.