Sakic says he’ll decide soon about returning |

Sakic says he’ll decide soon about returning

DENVER, Colorado ” Colorado Avalanche captain Joe Sakic, who has been mulling retirement, said on a radio interview Monday that he hopes to have a decision later this month.

“I needed some extra time this year,” Sakic said on Denver’s KKFN-FM during an interview to promote his upcoming charity golf tournament.

“It’s been a very, very difficult decision to make. I’m hoping to have something here in the next couple of weeks, make my final decision and go forward with it.”

Sakic, who missed 38 games after hernia surgery last season, said he doesn’t want this to linger much longer: “I should make my final decision pretty soon. Whatever that is, I want to make sure it’s 100 percent sure.”

Unlike the NFL’s Green Bay Packers, who pushed Brett Favre for a decision in March, setting up the unretirement saga that enveloped the league for much of the summer, the Avs’ front office told Sakic to take as much time as he needed.

Sakic said he’s been speaking with general manager Francois Giguere and coach Tony Granato, who replaced Joel Quenneville after the playoffs.

“When I talked to Francois in June, we both understood that the team was going to go forward, regardless of what my decision was going to be, and that enabled me to take as much time as I could,” Sakic said. “Right now, I know training camp’s approaching rapidly. Summer’s gone by pretty fast. I’m going to make my decision here pretty shortly.”

Sakic said it will come down to whether he still has the competitive fire to put in all the off-the-ice work required because he’d only want to play another season if he can still be a full-time, front-line center.

“I have to be honest with my body and myself and know that if I come back, I want to come back and help the team, and help the team be successful,” he said. “If I can’t be that player, then I don’t think it would be fair to the team or myself to play.”

The Avs report for physicals on Sept. 19 with training camp starting Sept. 20.

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