Peter Forsberg didn’t back down to anyone, especially not early in his career. But on one occasion, he barked up the wrong tree by going after legendary enforcers Bob Probert and Tie Domi—which led to a teammate stepping in and teaching him about two very important rules.
Peter Forsberg played his first NHL game in 1995. Due to a lockout, Forsberg had started the season in the Swedish league, playing eleven games with hometown club MoDo.
Forsberg was a physical player already at a young age. The year before making his NHL debut, he had 82 penalty minutes in the Swedish league. And although his opponents were bigger and tougher in the NHL, he had no plans to slow down. He didn’t care that there were players in the league who would drop the gloves without hesitation.
In his first game, Forsberg had a classic ‘Welcome to the NHL’ moment as Eric Lindros violently hit him. But that didn’t calm Forsberg down.
Not long after being bulldozed by Lindros, Forsberg went after Bob Probert, who was widely acknowledged as the greatest fighter in NHL history.
But that time, Forsberg’s teammate Adam Deadmarsh had to step in and teach Forsberg about the first of two rules in the league.
“When I came to the NHL, I was crazy. I cross-checked Probert’s stick when he skated by me towards his bench. That’s when Deadmarsh taught me rule number one: You can NEVER cross-check Bob Probert or his stick,” Forsberg said in a Swedish podcast.
In the early stages of Forsberg’s second season in the NHL, it was time for him to learn about rule number two after messing with another fighting hero, Bob Probert.
“One time, Domi punched me in the head after a whistle. It was my second year, and I didn’t really know much about him. So I elbowed him later in the game. That’s when I learned rule number two: Don’t EVER elbow Tie Domi in the head,” Forsberg said.
Forsberg went on to have a fantastic NHL career, winning two Stanley Cup championships. And although he might have followed his teammate’s rules from that point forward, he was still a physical player, giving and taking a lot of hits during his career.
What a player!