"Hey now, hey now. Don't dream. It's over". As rare as it is that I start a blog with lyrics from a Crowded House song, the Peter Forsberg sweepstakes are over before they begin. According to Vancouver GM Mike Gillis, Forsberg has decided to remain with Modo of the Swedish Elite League, ending the veritable lottery for his services in the NHL. While there are a pile of options for Forsberg to still explore this season - including being in Vancouver for the 2010 Winter Olympics - he will not be suiting up in the NHL this season. And for this, I am glad.
Don't get me wrong: the guy is still a world-class talent, even on one leg. The problem that I have is that he demands a king's ransom for his services in the NHL despite him only having one good leg to skate on. Sounds a lot like one of his fellow countrymen, doesn't it?
I don't know if it was common sense, maybe his sense of pride, or a combination of them both, but Forsberg has elected to stay with Modo. Frankly, it might be the best move he's made his entire career. Does anyone think that he would be the dominant player he once was after playing a mere twelve professional games in the last two years?
TSN's Bob McKenzie feels that there is a pretty good shot that Forsberg could suit up for Sweden at the Winter Olympics if his foot holds up while playing with Modo. He's trying to convince Sweden's coaches that his foot can and will stand up to the abuse that a short tournament puts players' bodies through. I, for one, would have no issue if Forsberg suits up for Sweden. After all, it is the greatest honour to represent one's country, and the Swedes do have a gold medal to defend.
After the season ends for Modo, I personally believe that Forsberg should hang the skates up. While I don't believe his passion for the game has decreased in any way, his body is simply telling him that it cannot handle the everyday abuse that an NHL hockey season is placed on it. And, really, what else does he have to prove?
- 1995 Calder Trophy winner as Rookie of the Year in the NHL.
- 2003 Hart Trophy winner as the league MVP in the NHL.
- 2003 Art Ross Trophy winner as the top scorer in the NHL.
- Three-time NHL First Team All-Star.
- Two-time Stanley Cup winner in 1996 and 2001.
- 1993 IIHF World Junior Championship top forward and all-star.
- 1998 IIHF World Championship top forward and all-star.
- Set the all-time points record at the 1993 WJC with 31 points in seven games.
- Holds the all-time WJC point total rcord with 41 points.
- 885 NHL points in 706 games.
- 171 NHL Playoff points in 151 games.
- Two-time Winter Olympic gold medallist in 1994 and 2006.
- Two-time World Championship gold medallist in 1992 and 1998.
For a guy with 636 career NHL assists, he hardly seems selfish.
Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!