NEW YORK -- Left wing Zach Parise is just about out of answers for the Minnesota Wild's persistent problems. He said as much in a three-minute session with the media following the Wild's latest fumble, a 4-2 loss to the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden on Thursday.
Parise said "I don't know" four times, "I'm not sure" twice, and "I don't have an answer for that" once.
"It's just been a struggle for us," he said. "All we can do is look forward and try to get out of this and see where we can play better to keep improving."
The Wild had a 2-0 lead and a 5-1 edge in shots on goal on the Rangers when Matt Dumba scored a power-play goal at 7:57 of the first period. They were outscored 4-0 and outshot 29-13 in the final 52:03.
Minnesota is 1-8-1 and has scored 16 goals in its past 10 games. The Wild are is 3-9-3 with 28 goals since Jan. 2.
Parise has one point, a goal, in the past nine games. He had seven shot attempts without a shot on goal Thursday; four were blocked and three missed the net.
"He's incredibly frustrated," Wild coach Mike Yeo said. "You can see that. He's getting some opportunities. He had seven attempts at the net, and shots are getting blocked, shots are missing the net. I think that frustration is definitely building."
Parise, who didn't show that frustration through his calm demeanor in front of the media on Thursday, was asked why the Wild's offense completely dried up after Dumba's goal?
"I'm not sure," he said. "Once we got the lead they started to play a little bit better, but we gotta find out why," he said. "Maybe there was something we were doing that didn't really allow us to get to the offensive zone or what the difference was."
The Wild have blown leads in each of their past five losses (0-4-1), so Parise was asked why keeping a lead has been such a problem?
"I don't know," he said. "Again, that's something we'll have to look at, if there is something we're doing different when we get the lead or what it is. I don't know. I don't have an answer for that."
It went on from there for a few more questions. It's hard to blame him too: Nobody around the Wild seems to have any concrete answers for how to fix their glaring problems.
"There's always an answer," Yeo said. "You just have to find it."
Parise said he's even entertaining the idea of looking, or hoping, for that answer from someone outside the organization, be it through a trade or a more drastic move such as a coaching change.
"If we're sitting here wasting our time thinking about that then we're jamming up our own heads and we're making it a lot harder on ourselves," Parise said. "You can't plan on that. You can't assume that's going to happen, because what if it doesn't, then we're just going to quit? We have to play better as a group, the group that's here right now."