STOCKHOLM, Sweden – Peter Forsberg is still hoping to return to the ice and could make a second attempt at a comeback with the Swedish national team next month.
Forsberg has been sidelined with a foot and ankle injury since finishing last season with the Nashville Predators. But Sweden coach Bengt-Ake Gustafsson said Tuesday that the former NHL star may try to play in the Feb. 7-10 LG Hockey Games in Stockholm.
“If he’s well enough, we’ll of course give him a chance,” Gustafsson told The Associated Press.
Forsberg first intended to play for Sweden in the Karjala Cup in November but had to pull out after the first practice session on ice. He said his foot still felt unstable in a skate, and that he was unsure whether he’d ever play again.
However, Gustafsson said he spoken to Forsberg during a sports gala event in Stockholm on Monday, and that the star was optimistic about his comeback plans.
“He said he’s going back on the ice next week. If he recuperates and holds up in the following few weeks we’ll take it from there,” Gustafsson said. “The main thing right now is that he recovers.”
Forsberg told Swedish daily Dagens Nyheter he has been training off the ice for the past month and is still hoping for a return to the NHL, but is unsure what team he would play for.
“I will definitely choose a team that is guaranteed to reach the playoffs, that has a chance to win the Stanley Cup,” Forsberg said.
He said his doctor thinks his troubled ankle will hold up.
“I believe in the doctor when he says it will work. And I do want to play hockey,” he said. “If I come back it won’t be to play for only two weeks, but because I feel that I am able to make it for a longer period. … It feels like this is the last chance.”
Forsberg won two Stanley Cups with the Colorado Avalanche and won the Hart Trophy as the NHL’s MVP in 2003 after scoring 29 goals and adding 77 assists. He also helped lead Sweden to Olympic gold medals in Lillehammer in 1994 and Turin in 2006.
Injuries have plagued him in recent years and he hasn’t played more than 60 games in a season since suiting up for 75 games in 2002-03 with the Avalanche.