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9/14/2006 5:49:47 PM

The Philadelphia Flyers have named Peter Forsberg the 15th captain in team history. Simon Gagne and Derian Hatcher have been named alternate captains.

"I think Peter is the obvious choice for our team," said general manager Bobby Clarke in making the announcement. "Not only is he our best player, but he's also won a Stanley Cup. He's experienced enough to know what the game needs and what the team needs to be a winner. I don't think the selection of Peter was very hard for us to make. We felt all along that he was the right guy, and he'll be a good captain for us.

"He'll be the guy that ends up being the closest to the coach and his responsibility is to his teammates, making sure that if there are problems in the locker room they are taken care of before they get to the coach. If they can't, then he'll be the guy who talks to the coach about it. Leadership is how he conducts himself and performs during the games and during practice.

"It was mostly Hitch (head coach Ken Hitchcock) and I (who made the decision). I know that Hitch talked to the assistant coaches and I talked to Paul (Holmgren). We've talked about it for quite awhile. Right from the start of the summer, we felt that once we heard that he had a chance to be healthy, he would be the guy."

"Clarkie and I both discussed the players and the feeling with all of us is that he is the person right now who wants the responsibility," said Hitchcock. "I've talked to him, and he really feels like that (the captaincy) is part of the evolution of any player. He's learned from people like Joe Sakic and Adam Foote in particular, two of the best. He wants that responsibility. He wants to be the person who establishes the direction of the hockey club post-Keith Primeau. He knows that it's big shoes to fill and he knows the job that Keith did. He feels like he's got tremendous support from the players' leadership group who are his personal friends and are good teammates. He's very confident that with their support and with a willingness to learn, that he's going to be very successful.

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