PETER FORSBERG may not be able to skate backward anymore, but he can still backpedal with the best of them.
The former Flyer, who retired from the NHL in February after he couldn't find a skate comfortable enough for his oft-injured right foot, is backpedaling after making comments that suggested Sweden tanked a game in the 2006 Turin Olympics to get an easier draw in the next round.
Sweden lost to Slovakia, 3-0, in the group stage to advance to play Switzerland - instead of a tougher Canadian squad - in the quarterfinals. Canada lost to Russia and the Swedes went on to win the gold medal.
On Sunday, Forsberg told Sweden's SVT television that he "saw no reason to win the game" against Slovakia.
"But there was no order from any coach that we should lose," Forsberg said. "Maybe we discussed within the group that it's probably better if we don't go out and tire ourselves out too much."
That spurred the International Ice Hockey Federation to question the Swedish federation. And that caused Forsberg to backtrack faster than he had ever skated in his 13-year NHL career.
Yesterday, Forsberg told the Swedish news agency TT that his comments were taken out of context and that no coach or player "talked about not doing their best in the match against Slovakia."
"What I meant to say was that even for someone like me, with a winning mentality, it is sometimes difficult to find full motivation for a match that doesn't have to be won at any cost."
We got a kick out of this "headline" on Fark.com:
"Ed Wade returns to the Phillies as a special consultant. Houston Astros fans confused since they're pretty sure he's been working for Philadelphia the past five seasons."