Hip injury sidelines Avalanche forward

DENVER -- Colorado Avalanche forward Alex Tanguay has dropped out of the Swiss League because of a hip injury.

Tanguay decided to leave HC Lugano a month after signing up to play during the NHL lockout, The Denver Post reported Thursday.

Tanguay scored two goals and five points in five games, but pain in his hip became too much. Larry Huras, Lugano's coach, said Tanguay was playing at about 60 percent and felt he would be better off going back to North America.

The Avalanche had no information on Tanguay's injury, but it is believed to be unrelated to the knee and thigh injuries that sidelined him for much of the final weeks of the 2003-04 regular season and three games in the playoffs.

Tanguay, 24, had 25 goals and 79 points last season in 69 games for Colorado. He was slated to earn $4.25 million this season.

Other Avalanche players are having more success in Europe. Goaltender David Aebischer has posted a 3.68 goals-against average for Lugano, while Peter Forsberg leads the Swedish Elite League with 25 points in 17 games.