Forsberg “shocked” at move to Nashville

Swedish ice hockey superstar Peter Forsberg has said he is "shocked" after his club, the Philadelphia Flyers, suddenly traded him for four young players. Forsberg will now play for the Nashville Predators.

“I am a little shocked,” said Forsberg, the subject of recent trade rumors.

“I kind of knew about it. … I was being fair to give up my no-trade clause so they could get something for me.

“I get to go to a good team, so it worked out. I liked it here, but it was hard when I couldn’t commit (to signing a new contract). That’s why they had to move me, and I understand that.”

In return for their Swedish superstar, the Flyers received right wing Scottie Upshall, defensive prospect Ryan Parent and first- and third-round selections in the upcoming draft in June from the Predators, who lead the Western Conference with 81 points.

“Peter Forsberg is one of the NHL’s most complete players and the ultimate competitor – a consistent winner who has, year in and year out, been a difference-maker in the Stanley Cup playoffs,” Nashville general manager David Poile said.

“He strengthens our club up the middle and will provide another battle-tested, veteran voice to our dressing room. Adding a player of this caliber also sends a strong message to our fans that the Nashville Predators are prepared to compete at the highest level.”

Drafted sixth overall by the Flyers in 1991, Forsberg was part of the package Philadelphia sent to Quebec for Eric Lindros in June 1992.

He went on to win the Calder Trophy in 1995 as well as the Art Ross and Hart Trophies in 2003 and helped the Colorado Avalanche to Stanley Cup championships in 1996 and 2001.

Forsberg, 33, has recorded 11 goals and 29 assists in 40 games this season.

The five-time All-Star, who is in the final year of a two-year, 11.5 million-dollar contract, has missed 16 games with a number of injuries, including groin, foot and back ailments.

“Peter could not commit to signing an extension because of his uncertainty,” Flyers chairman Ed Snider said. “Therefore, we had to do what was best for the future of the team. Peter is a tremendous player and person.

I would like to thank him for all that he did for this franchise. We wish him the best.”

Forsberg said the reason he was unwilling to sign an extension with the Flyers was due to his oft-injured foot.

“For me, playing hockey means that you do your best and play at 100 percent every single night,” he said. “It’s been feeling much better with all of the help that I have been getting, but I’d like to see that I’ve been playing good for a long time before I commit to another year.”

A three-time Olympian who led Sweden to the gold medal in 1994 and 2006, Forsberg has collected 246 goals and 610 assists in 680 career contests with the Quebec-Colorado franchise and Philadelphia.