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Minnesota Wild Free Agency 2012: Chase For Top Free Agents Begins Sunday

The Wild are expected to make their pitches to Zach Parise and Ryan Suter as free agency kicks off.

May 30, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; New Jersey Devils left wing Zach Parise during game one of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals against the Los Angeles Kings at the Prudential Center.  The Kings won 1-0 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE
May 30, 2012; Newark, NJ, USA; New Jersey Devils left wing Zach Parise during game one of the 2012 Stanley Cup Finals against the Los Angeles Kings at the Prudential Center. The Kings won 1-0 in overtime. Mandatory Credit: Jim O'Connor-US PRESSWIRE

The Minnesota Wild are more than $19 million under the cap as free agency begins on Sunday, meaning they'll have plenty of money to throw at top free agents. One of the obvious prizes this year is left winger Zach Parise of the New Jersey Devils, who grew up in the Twin Cities. It's a match made in heaven, right?

The main problem, of course, is the other dozen or so teams that would also love to have Parise play for them. According to the Star Tribune, the Wild will likely be one of the teams attempting to meet with Parise as soon as they can on Sunday. Parise will be holding court at his agent's offices in Mississauga, Ontario.

The team's other premier free agent target, defenseman Ryan Suter of the Nashville Predators, is taking a slightly more laid-back approach. His agents will be handling negotiations while Suter spends some time at his farm in Wisconsin. He is not expected to meet in person with teams on Sunday.

At least one free agency domino should fall soon, as the University of Wisconsin's Justin Schultz is expected to inform teams of his decision on Saturday. Schultz used a loophole in the CBA to become an unrestricted free agent, and has drawn offers from a number of teams, including Minnesota.

For more on the Minnesota Wild, head over to Hockey Wilderness. More on the NHL as free agency and trade season start to heat up, head over to SB Nation's dedicated NHL Hub.

Photographs by Micah Taylor, clairity, and Fibonacci Blue used in background montage under Creative Commons. Thank you.