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Avalanche President & General Manager Pierre Lacroix Speaks About The Departure Of Forsberg & Foote

by Staff Writer / Colorado Avalanche
On the departure of Peter Forsberg:

"I have two feelings about the departure of Peter. First, on a personal note, I have created a bond with many of our players over the years and have been fortunate to create good bond with a quality person like Peter. On that feeling, this is not a pleasant day. On the professional side, we have to look forward to the new landscape in the NHL. We did everything we could do to keep him. Peter is a great athlete and a great human being who has done tremendous things for this franchise. I wish him good luck."

"Is Peter Forsberg one of the essential elements for us to win? This is a team. I would have to let go of people to fulfill the dollar commitment to Peter by trading Alex Tanguay and Milan Hejduk to free the millions of dollars to sign Peter Forsberg, and I don't think the fans would be happy with me. I had to be responsible for the team."

On the expectation of Peter Forsberg to play in Colorado:

"What can I do as a responsibility to the franchise within the maximum I can offer? Did I think that Paul Kariya would come here and take $1.2 million when he was making nine million the year before? A person has to make his own decision, and I respect Peter's decision."

On the departure of Adam Foote:

"Adam is a wonderful athlete and a wonderful human being. He was understanding of the situation and the new landscape of the NHL."

On the offers to Adam Foote and Peter Forsberg:

"We offered the maximum dollars we have available under the cap in this new landscape. We offered Peter $13.5 million over four years and Adam Foote $12 million over four years. We have 21 players on the active roster and had three million dollars available this year to split between the two of them. If I give three million dollars this year to Peter, who will play defense for Adam?"

"We had three million available for both this season that we could offer under the new CBA. For Peter, it was $1.5 million, $3.0 million, $4.5 million, and $4.5 million. For Adam, we offered $1.5 million, $3.0 million, $4.5 million, and $3.0 million for the last year of his contract, when he would be 38 years old. Under the new CBA, the most you can offer a player in the subsequent year of the contract is 100% of the first year, so the first year is key."

On the future:

"We have always offered our fans an exciting product and have been a contender for 11 straight years. It is disappointing that Adam and Peter are leaving, but if you apply the new rules, our fans will see what exciting players Patrice Brisebois and Pierre Turgeon are. This is a new era and if we need to adjust, that is our job. We need to do an evaluation on the way we manage."

"The three-million dollar slot we had for a player is gone, but we will continue to work on our 23-man roster."

"Our fans need to trust us. We will adjust to this new landscape and, unlike many teams in the League, we are already close to a 23-man roster that is more than capable of competing for the Stanley Cup."

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