“No way” Parise would sign with the Rangers, wants to stay in Jersey

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As we predicted, Devils captain and pending unrestricted free agent Zach Parise didn’t commit to returning to New Jersey when asked about his future this morning. However, he did go so far as to say he wants to come back.

“This is a great place to play and I love playing here,” he said. “I love being here.”

Oh, and remember a few weeks ago when Parise’s dad said his son would “fit right in” with the New York Rangers? Yeah, not happening.

“No way,” said Parise.

So that’s one team we can scratch off the list.

Parise also said it’s possible he could re-sign before July 1. (Presumably he meant with the Devils, though it’s possible his rights could be traded if a deal can’t be reached.)

Now start the negotiations. Will the Devils be able to afford Parise given the club’s financial challenges? How much will he demand? Will he base his worth on Ilya Kovalchuk’s 15-year, $100 million contract? Not to suggest he’d ask for that much, but hey, if he’s the “face of the Devils” and all…