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Parise out three months with knee injury @NHLdotcom

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) - New Jersey Devils left wing Zach Parise is going to be sidelined three months with a knee injury.

The struggling Devils announced Tuesday evening that Parise underwent exploratory arthroscopic surgery on his right knee to repair a torn meniscus.

Parise hurt the knee skating in August and has been bothered by the injury all season. He had three goals and three assists in 12 games.

The Devils sent Parise home from Los Angeles after a game on Saturday to have his knee examined.

Devils president and general manager Lou Lamoriello did not immediately return a telephone call by The Associated Press seeking comment.

Parise has been the focal point of the Devils' offense the past four seasons with 31, 32, 45 and 38 goals.

In the gold medal game against Canada in the Olympics, the U.S. Olympian scored the game-tying goal with 24 seconds left in regulation. Canada won the gold on a goal by Sidney Crosby in overtime.

The announcement is the latest woe to befall the Devils this season.

New Jersey, which has made the playoffs the past 13 seasons, is off to its worst start in 27 years at 3-9-1. The Devils' seven points are the lowest in the NHL and one has to wonder how long Lamoriello is going to continue with rookie coach John MacLean.

Very little has gone right for New Jersey since it re-signed high-scoring left wing Ilya Kovalchuk to a 17-year, $102 million contract in the offseason.

The NHL ruled the deal circumvented its salary cap and it eventually fined the team $3 million and took away two high draft picks over the next four years, including a first-rounder. The Devils can pick which season they give up the choice.

The deal, which was later reworked and approved at $100 million over 15 years, forced the Devils to play a couple of games with less than 20 players on the bench because having more would have put them over the cap.

Since the season opener, New Jersey has struggled scoring and been beset by injuries to veteran forward Brian Rolston (sports hernia), young defensemen Mark Fraser and Matt Corrente (both with broken hands) and rookie center Jacob Josefson (detached ligament in the right hand.)

The Devils will finish a road trip on Wednesday with a game at Chicago.

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