When I wrote the piece about Evgeni Nabokov a few days ago, I took a poke at Peter Forsberg. I used his constant ability to rile up a fan base with the promise of a come back, and that of Brett Favre, to show that players who are past their prime need to hang 'em up and call it a career. Apparently, our friends at Mile High Hockey don't take kindly to people who don't like Adrian Dater and Peter Forsberg.
Which makes sense, since the two are more inseparable than Siamese twins.
The folks at MHH are good people, and I meant, and mean no ill will towards them. I would however, like the chance to explain why I do not like Peter Forsberg. Make the jump, and let's discuss. Shall we?
A warning before you make the jump. This is a debate piece, and is not related to the Wild, nor any current topic surrounding the Wild. If you do not like to debate hockey talk, skip this post. If you do not enjoy debating hockey, or the language and bitterness that can come with it, I beg you to please skip it. It is not intended to offend anyone, and if you are offended, you have been warned.
First of all, we will look at the main piece, since I feel I can deal with this portion in the most rational manner. If you would like to go read the piece, I would welcome you to do so. The title of the piece, "I don't think you are using that word correctly," is an awesome pull from a great movie. However it is misplaced. I know exactly what the word means, and what Forsberg does to the Avs fan base is, indeed, despicable.
For a definition, let's turn to our good friend, Mr. Webster:
deserving to be despised : so worthless or obnoxious as to rouse moral indignation
The man deserves to be despised. He has raised the hope of the fans in Colorado more times than I can count, only to then either back off or sign somewhere else. His inability to admit to himself that his career is over is obnoxious, and it aroused moral indignation in me. It is... despicable.
Now that we have that out of the way, let's look at the body of the post, shall we?
Since the piece wasn't about Forsberg, we weren't graced with Bryan's explanation as to why he finds Forsberg despicable or why he feels it warranted to lump Forsberg in with Captain Penis Crocs. I can only assume that Reynolds has grown tired of Forsberg's numerous comeback attempts and has somehow drawn a parallel to the running drama that has been Brett Favre.
I have, indeed, tired of his incessant need for the spotlight and desire to come back, but not play the entire season. If he wants to come back, more power to him, but this waiting until after the All-Star break crap is petty. Reminds me a bit of the need of a certain Quarter Back to not come back until after training camp is over. Play the entire season? That's apparently not in his vocabulary, nor in Forsberg's.
Peter Forsberg has never wavered, never been unclear. He wants to play and has wanted to play this entire time. He was not on the sidelines waiting to decide if he really felt like going for one more year nor did he delay to pick a team that would give him the best chance at another Stanley Cup. He was waiting to see if his surgically repaired foot would ever become stable enough to let him do what he loves: playing hockey. No waffling here. His teammates didn't have to fly to his house to get him to make up his freaking mind about one more season. Peter Forsberg is nothing like Brett Favre.
Nor did I ever say he has to be convinced to come back. Either did Nabokov. However, the parallel I was drawing still works.
He was waiting for his foot to heal? For three years? That tells me it is not going to heal, and he needs to admit it to himself. I don't really care if he had to have players fly over to Europe to talk to him or not. He is old, he is injured, and he is a joke. The fact that Avs fans continue to defend this guy is beyond me.
He is not delaying to see which team gives him the best shot at the Cup? Really? I don't see him skating with the Islanders. He must feel he has a chance to do something in Colorado, or he wouldn't be there. Same thing he has done during the past attempts at a return. Philly? Nashville? Colorado? All teams either in, or pushing for a playoff spot when he came to them.
The ability to play hockey at a high level is something so many of us can only dream of. And, despite the injuries, Forsberg played pretty darn well the last time he attempted to play - something Minnesota fans of all people should be aware of. If Forsberg still wants to try to play, still has that fire and desire to compete in the NHL, why would ANYONE call that despicable? Cut the guy some slack, dude. The man is just trying to play hockey. Where's the harm in that?
I don't care if the guy wants to play hockey. He can do so. The fact that he continues to come back and play half seasons and make himself into a walking, talking punchline makes it a self-fulfilling prophecy. The fact that during his last return he made the Wild look silly doesn't matter much to me. He didn't play an entire season, came into a playoff team well rested and made tired, beaten down players look like they were tired, beaten down hockey players.
He did a great job during that series. His ability to flop to the ice like a soccer star has never been better.
Where is the harm in that? He makes the league a joke, the Avs a joke, and those who defend him a joke. That's where the harm is. If he is so convinced he can play, then he needs to come in at the beginning of the season and play hockey. Coming in at the mid point and thinking I am going to respect his decision to so... not going to happen.
Why do I not like Peter Forsberg?
I have never liked Peter Forsberg. Even after the Stars left for Texas, and I was left to choose a new team to be loyal to. After the pain of watching my team leave, I had the chance to adopt the Avs. This was before the days of Game Center Live and NHL Center Ice. The few chances I got to see the Avs, I was awestruck with the abilities of Joe Sakic, and Patrick Roy was, and still is, one of my favorite players of all time.
Then there was Sir Flops A Lot. The guy would barely get touched and drop to the ice like he broke his leg. He is everything that is wrong with hockey players, and likely one of the main reasons there is a misconduct penalty for taking a dive. No matter how creative he is, what his numbers look like, all I see when I see his name is a soccer player in the World Cup grabbing his shin after a guy stripped him of the ball.
So, why do I hate Peter Forsberg? Because he is a pansy and a cheater.
The comment section of the post over at MHH is awesome. The pure quantity of asinine stupidity and over reaching assumptions is shocking. Let's take a look at some of my favorites:
Although if I were in his shoes and Foppa was trying to join a divisional rival team, I’d be shiting my pants as well.
It has nothing to do with him going back to the Avs. If he was signing with any team, including the Wild, I would feel the exact same way. I mock players who deserve to be mocked. Check my past record if you do not believe it.
centered around an overage athlete attempting to come back
What the hell does that mean? Does he mean average? Or over-age? Or maybe Peter’s electricity bill has some overages on it?
Indeed. You caught me. I forgot the hyphen. I apologize for making a typo. You are the winner of this debate.
I think this guy puts a bit too much stock in Puck Daddy to be honest. Yesterday I found this article (a Lambert piece, not Wysh), with quite a nasty piece on Foppa: saw it linked in another thread here but here it is. Basically the argument is since Forsberg hasn’t played in a while, he shouldn’t play now. It’s ridiculous. Sounds like good old Bryan is getting an exercise in confirmation bias if you ask me.
Hadn't read it until now. Good post from Lambert. As for confirmation bias... I haven't liked Forsberg for 15 years or so, even when I was a fan of the team he played for. But it must have to do with something other than that.
I have less issue with Lambert only because he doesn’t try to draw the Favre connection. At least with Lambert he’s calling his shot. When Forsberg proves him wrong you can rub it in his face for getting it wrong. This is an infinitely more (journalistically) brave stance than waiting to see how he does and THEN doing a story about how he’s a washout/distraction etc…
The Favre thing on the other hand is totally off base.
Call my shot? Fine. Forsberg comes back, and within a month is on IR. That's my shot. Same shot I took at Modano, and look where he is. You want to wipe my face in it, that's fine. We'll see how it turns out.
Wonder how they’ll feel when Foppa puts up some points against em?
Indeed, because if Forsberg scores some points against the Wild, I will likely feel shame and cry. I could not care less if he does or not. The sheer fact he is making the attempt at the half way point of the year shows me exactly what kind of man he is.
From Bob in Boulder:
I hope that Bryan has a blu-ray player so he can watch movies when the playoffs start.
I actually do not. Although I do not live and die with the successes and failures of the Wild, so if they make the playoffs, it gives me more hockey to write about. If they don't we move on to off season coverage. Make the playoffs or don't, I still get to write about hockey.
Besides these are some big words from a guy whose team is only three points ahead of such a terrible Wild team, is only in the playoffs by one point, and is pinning its hopes on a 37 year old washed up has been.
From DanWinkler and The Red:
This fucking guy is the blog version of Kiszla. A hack’s a hack, no matter where you write your stuff.
Good comparison. Just writes shit to annoy and ire. Basically a Troll.
I didn't know what Kiszla was, so I looked him up. Just so long as you don't compare me to Dater, I'm fine with it. As for writing just to annoy and ire... nah. I write my opinion on some issues, and not others. If they upset you, I apologize, but someone is always going to disagree with me.
I just don’t understand how Forsberg’s interest is playing hockey brings out the total douche in so many people who have access to a keyboard. He’s not hurting a single god-damned soul by doing this.
No one hurts anyone by playing hockey, except maybe other hockey players. It isn't a matter of hurting anyone, it is a matter of respect for yourself, and for the game. He is giving the league, himself, and the game a black eye by being unable to admit it is over.
That About Sums it Up.
For the Avs fans about to join the thread, if they will that is, let me sum it all up. The comparison to Favre was not an exact one. The two situations are different, and have the same result. An old man failing to accept that his career is over, and making a fool of himself, his team, his fans, and the league by dong so.
I do not like players who make comebacks in the middle of a season. It irritates me no matter who it is, or for what team.
I do not like Peter Forsberg, and never have. He is a pansy and a cheater.
Let me have it.