Science Fair Project Encyclopedia
Peter Forsberg (born July 20, 1973 in Örnsköldsvik, Sweden) is a center/left winger for his hometown team, MODO Hockey. Before returning to Sweden in 2004, he was one of the top players in the NHL with the Colorado Avalanche. He planned his return to his homeland even before the current NHL labor dispute turned into a full-fledged lockout. However, If there is a 2005-06 NHL season, Peter Forsberg plans to be part of it and hopes it is with the Avalanche, his agent said Monday April 18, 2005. "That's his mind-set at the moment," said Don Baizley, Forsberg's agent, "and I don't think he's looking to get out of Denver. He loves Denver."
During his North American career, Forsberg was recognized as one of the NHL's top players both offensively and defensively, and thus as one of the top stars in the league. He is especially noted for his incredible strength on his skates and how difficult it can be to knock him down. His greatest weakness is a tendency to become injured. He has not played a full NHL season since the 1995-1996 season, and he missed the entire 2001-2002 season due to a variety of injuries.
From a young age, Forsberg was recognized as a top athlete. At age 15, Swedish hockey officials made a video of Forsberg, showing off his superior agility and vertical leap. He played junior hockey with MODO Hockey, debuting in 1989. After playing 23 games with the senior club in 1991, he was drafted by the Philadelphia Flyers with the 6th pick of the first round of the 1991 NHL Entry Draft.
The first pick of that same draft, Eric Lindros would be permanently connected to Forsberg when, with Eric having refused to sign with the Quebec Nordiques, they traded him, on June 30, 1992. The Nordiques gave Lindros to the Flyers in exchange for Forsberg, Ron Hextall, Steve Duchesne , Kerry Huffman , Chris Simon , Mike Ricci , two first round draft picks, and cash. Many consider this trade to be the foundation of the Nordiques-turned-Colorado Avalanche's pair of Stanley Cup-winning teams. Indeed, some have suggested that Forsberg, by himself, has had a better, more valuable career than Eric Lindros, and so this trade is frequently listed as one of the all-time most lopsided deals in NHL history.
Forsberg remained in Sweden, playing for MoDo for the next 2 years, where he starred. In 1994, he led the Swedes to a gold medal in the Winter Olympics, scoring the winning goal of the penalty shootout that decided the gold medal game. An image of Forsberg scoring this goal was later placed on a Swedish postage stamp, making Peter the only hockey player so far to be placed on a Swedish stamp.
Forsberg first played in the NHL in the 1994-1995 season. He was an instant success, scoring 50 points in the strike-shortened season, and winning the Calder Trophy. In 1995, the Nordiques moved to Colorado and became the Avalanche. Forsberg played a large role in the team's success in their first year in Denver. He scored 116 points in the regular season, and 21 points in 22 games during the playoffs, helping the Avalanche defeat the Florida Panthers to win the Stanley Cup.
Forsberg continued to star in the league, although the Avalanche failed to win the cup again in their next few tries. In 1999, he led all players in scoring in the playoffs, but the Avalanche were defeated by the Dallas Stars, who would go on to win their first Stanley Cup. Defeat came again in 2000, despite the acquisition of Ray Bourque. However, in 2001, the Avalanche would win their second Stanley Cup. This victory was somewhat bittersweet for Forsberg, though. After the Avalanche defeated the Los Angeles Kings in the second round of the playoffs, Forsberg had to have his spleen removed and would not play again in the playoffs. He decided to take the entire next season off to recuperate, and only returned for the playoffs, which he again led in scoring with 27 points, but again with his team losing before the Stanley Cup Finals, this time to the Detroit Red Wings.
2002-2003 was a banner year for Forsberg. Much healthier and more rested than he had been in the previous few years, he went on to lead the league with 106 points, and was rewarded with the Hart Trophy. Despite this regular-season glory, the Avalanche lost to the underdog Minnesota Wild in the playoffs.
Peter Forsberg was one of the biggest stars in the NHL throughout much of the 1990s and into the early 2000s. He has played in five National Hockey League All-Star Games and been named to the NHL First All-Star Team three times, in addition to his two Stanley Cups, Hart Trophy, Calder Trophy, Art Ross Trophy, and Olympic Gold Medal. His two-way play made him one of the most coveted players in the league.
Many have accused Forsberg of attempting to draw penalties through exaggeration or outright diving. Although Forsberg is hardly the only player accused of this, he is one of the most prominent due to his level of talent and league recognition, and he is frequently used as an example of the problem when it is discussed. These charges of diving stem from legitimate accusations that opponents purposely target the Swedish star, forcing Forsberg to exaggerate these penalties.
See also: List of Swedes in sports
- Peter's stats - at tsn.ca
|Winner of the Calder Trophy|
|Winner of the Hart Trophy|
Martin St. Louis
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