Forsberg returning to Flyers?

"We’ll see how it plays out and then cross that bridge," Flyers general manager Paul Holmgren said of the team potentially scouting Peter Forsberg again. (Chris O’Meara/AP file photo)

    With Simon Gagne sidelined for six to eight weeks, would the Flyers be interested in bringing past-his-prime forward Peter Forsberg back to Philly?

    Well, general manager Paul Holmgren is keeping his options open, but he downplayed a report that the Flyers have dispatched scout Ilkka Sinisalo to the Karjala Cup specifically to check out the 36-year-old Forsberg. The tourney starts Thursday in Finland.
  “Ilkka will be at the tournament anyway, and to say he’s scouting Peter is a stretch,” Holmgren said Tuesday night.  “But he’ll probably see him play.”
    Holmgren said that “if Peter is healthy and interested in returning to the NHL, who wouldn’t have interest? But that’s putting the cart before the horse. We don’t know if he’s healthy. We’ll see how it plays out and then cross that bridge.”
    In other words, like every other GM, Holmgren has to keep his options open, but I'd be very surprised if Foppa returned.

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    Gagne had successful hernia and abdominal surgery Tuesday, Holmgren said. Before the operation, one of the ultrasounds appeared to show that Gagne had two small hernias near his belly buton, but when surgery was performed, it was discovered he only had one hernia, the GM reported.

    The left winger is expected to miss at least 20 more games.

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    Read my story in Wednesday's Inquirer about emerging left winger James van Riemsdyk, who could become the first rookie-of-the-year in the Flyers' history.

    You may be surprised that Bobby Clarke didn't win the Calder Trophy as the top rookie. Chicago goalie Tony Esposito was the rookie-of-the-year in Clarke's first season, 1969-70.

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    The Flyers, who lead the league in goals per game (3.67) and power-play success (28.1 percent), play at Buffalo Friday.