We’ve heard the stories for weeks. The great Peter Forsberg feels better than he has felt in years and wants to return to where it all began, for the third time.
Adrian Dater of The Denver Post announced earlier in the day that Forsberg would indeed sign with the Colorado Avalanche, although terms have yet to be released. Back in 2007-2008, the 37-year-old returned to the NHL with the Avs, playing in only nine games while posting one goal and 14 points before returning to Modo of the SEL. Three years ago he appeared to have something left in the tank so barring any injury setbacks he in theory would do the same again.
The struggling Avs could use all the help they can get as they recently fell out of the eighth seed and remain four points away from a playoff berth. Having another legitimate top six forward inserted into their lineup should only help as the team continues to look for the right combination of forwards since everyone came back healthy.
Players like TJ Galiardi, Milan Hejduk and Chris Stewart have all failed to get back their early-season rhythm so hopefully an injection of leadership and determination will wake them up. However, the team will need to sure up their goaltending problem if they feel they can make a legitimate run down the stretch and deep into the postseason.
To clear room on the roster the Avs sent rookie Ryan Stoa back down to the AHL. Stoa had been centering the third line but Ryan O’Reilly probably comes back and takes that spot. Considering Forsberg’s age, he will likely play left wing and should take the place of recent scapegoat Kevin Porter, next to Paul Stastny and David Jones. Forsberg could also see time with Matt Duchene and former linemate Milan Hejduk or the budding power forward Stewart.
At some point there were comparisons of Forsberg being last generation’s Sidney Crosby; a player simply that skilled. As long as his foot stays in decent shape there should be no reason not to expect a point-per-game pace and another uptick in production for the Avs– who sit 5th in the League with 3.10 goals forced per game.