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Zucker: 'Vegas Will Bounce Back'

Wild forward's family safe after overnight shooting near Las Vegas Strip

by Dan Myers @1DanMyers /

ST. PAUL -- Like most of the country, Minnesota Wild forward Jason Zucker woke up to the stunning news of the tragedy that had unfolded overnight in Las Vegas. 

For Zucker, it hit very much close to home.

Born in Newport Beach, California, Zucker and his family moved to Las Vegas when he was an infant and they still call it home. While Zucker's family is safe, he said he did have one friend who was at the concert and was shot. 

As far as Zucker knows, his friend is in stable condition. More than 500 people were injured in what has become the largest mass shooting in United States history. The death toll is already at 58 and could climb in the coming days. 

Video: Zucker Reacts to Las Vegas Tragedy

"It's a very small community there. It seems like there's a lot of people and a lot of tourists, obviously, but it's a very small community," Zucker said. "I know they'll rally behind everyone. The law enforcement did a wonderful job as far as I've been hearing. Everybody, all the responders, from what I've heard, have been phenomenal and just the support overall has been great."

Tweet from @Jason_Zucker16: We just woke up to the horrific news of the shooting in Las Vegas...

Zucker is encouraging Las Vegas residents to donate blood to those who were wounded in the shooting.

The incident occurred around 10 p.m. Pacific time on Sunday night at a concert venue constructed across Las Vegas Boulevard from the Luxor Hotel and Casino. A gunman, Stephen Paddock, fired upon the venue from the 32nd floor of the Mandalay Bay Hotel and Casino, located next door to the Luxor.

"That's pretty much a pop-up venue, as far as I know of," Zucker said. "It's pretty much an empty parking lot, and I believe they bring in a stage and seating. I know where it is, but I've never been there."

In addition to Zucker's friend who was involved, he said his wife had a few friends who were at the show but came away uninjured.

"I know Vegas will bounce back. I know they're a strong community with a lot of great supporters behind them," Zucker said.

Tweet from @Jason_Zucker16: After I got to the rink this morning I heard about my friend, Nick. He's a great man & hockey player. Please keep him in your thoughts

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