Minnesota Wild forward Zach Parise was on the ice during the morning skate Saturday and could return to play as soon as Wednesday at the Vancouver Canucks.
The Wild game Saturday against the Nashville Predators (8 p.m., ET; FS-TN, FS-N) will be Parise's seventh missed with an MCL sprain; he hasn't played since Nov. 5.
Wild coach Mike Yeo said Parise was scheduled to meet with doctors on Saturday to see if he would be cleared for contact.
"It's the first step obviously, and I talked to him out there, and it's very different from the controlled skates that he's been in," Yeo told the Wild website. "Morning skates are pretty light."?
If cleared, Parise could practice Monday and Tuesday in preparation to play Wednesday. Yeo told the Pioneer Press, "I'm holding no expectations."
"I just think the main thing right now is let's just hear what the doctors have to say, and then we can decide how quickly we can try to get him back," Yeo said. "But obviously putting his health first, and his long-term health first, making sure that when he comes back that he's going to stay in."
Parise, who was not available to the media Saturday, has seven goals and nine points in 12 games this season.