Feb 14, 2011, 9:27 PM EDT
With Peter Forsberg announcing his retirement this afternoon, the Avalanche legend and once dominating power forward finally faced up the reality of his situation. Sadly for Forsberg, his health, which has always held him back from having an even bigger career in the NHL, finally caught up to him to make him realize it was time to call it a career.
Forsberg spoke today to announce his departure from the NHL and it’s clear that his disappointment at his comeback and the sad realization that it’s all over was tough news to face up to.
“When I went out on the rink, I gave everything,” Forsberg said today. “I tried and tried and tried. I’m really sure this time.”
Forsberg added one other line with an emotional pause in his words (video here) that hammer home the point that this is it for him.
“I hope people remember me, that when I walked out of the rink, I gave everything,” he said.
Forsberg finishes his NHL career with 249 goals and 636 assists in 708 games. He won two Stanley Cups in 1996 and 2001, two Olympic gold medals in 1994 and 2006, the Calder Trophy as rookie of the year in 1995, and the Hart Trophy as league MVP in 2003.
In an era in the NHL when offense was tough to find, Forsberg excelled at scoring and setting up his teammates using his size and physicality to make room for himself. Many have been critical of Forsberg in the past for his attempts to fight through injuries and keep trying to hang on in the NHL, but it was a process he had to work out for himself and see if he could pull it off. His much maligned foot that caused him so many troubles throughout the end of his career was ultimately the thing that did him in once again, serving to be a sad reminder for himself and fans of what could’ve been had those problems never happened.
Forsberg is most likely destined for a date in the Hockey Hall of Fame and when he’s inducted in Toronto, it’s crazy to think that after being the highly touted prospect in the Eric Lindros deal in June of 1992 that he’s going to wind up being the most famous guy out of that entire monster deal.
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