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Monday, February 26, 2007

Good timing, Pete

I was encouraged over the weekend not only by Peter Forsberg's excellent play and game-winning goal against Detroit, but also by reading the following further explanation in The Tennessean about his decision to decline Coach Trotz's request that he participate in the shootout at the end of Thursday night's game with Montreal:

Forsberg explained Friday why he told Trotz he'd prefer not to be one of the top three shootout participants in Thursday's game against Montreal. Forsberg wound up shooting fourth and slipped to the ice before getting off a quality attempt. "To be honest, I don't think I'm the best goal-scorer in the league," Forsberg said. "If you look at the statistics, I've got more (assists) than goals. I think this team has a lot of breakaway guys."

I was admittedly being a little hard on Forsberg, but I suppose that's because of the level of expectations that superstars tend to generate. As I mentioned on Friday, we're all human, even athletes and other people who excel at a high level of performance, but one thing that distinguishes superstars is that they tend to outperform the rest of the field sooner or later and on a regular basis. Two things that distinguish great athletes from great leaders is the ability to acknowledge one's strengths and weaknesses and the ability to see how one's skills can best align with the rest of the team's talents.

Forsberg broke out of what might be considered a mini-slump and recorded his first two points as a Predator as Nashville downed the Red Wings 4-3 in overtime in front of a sellout crowd. Keep in mind that this is the second consecutive week that Forsberg has downed the Red Wings by scoring the clinching goal:
In his final appearance with the Philadelphia Flyers last week, Peter Forsberg scored the game-winning goal in a victory over the Detroit Red Wings. It might not have been a showdown game — the Flyers long had fallen out of playoff contention — but it did provide yet another example of Forsberg sticking it to the best team of the last decade.
Keep in mind that this appeared in an article that ran in Saturday's paper, prior to that night's heroics by Forsberg. I'm not expecting that Forsberg--or any other Pred--will score every game, but I'm glad to see him begin to contribute. I imagine that we'll see a lot more assists, goals and, hopefully, wins in the near future, thanks to Forsberg and the rest of the Preds.

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