Daniel Briere willing to play close to home, still considering retirement

Isaiah J. Downing / USA TODAY Sports

One thing is for sure: Daniel Briere wants to be close to his family.

The 37-year-old forward, who remains without a contract for the upcoming season, is enjoying an offseason skating with his three teenage sons, but knows he'll have to come to a decision regarding his hockey-playing future in the coming weeks.

Briere has bounced from the Philadelphia Flyers (who bought out his contract in 2013) to the Montreal Canadiens and Colorado Avalanche over the past couple years, and would prefer to ply his trade somewhere close to the New Jersey home where his sons live, according to Scott Burnside of ESPN.

But before settling on any opportunity, Briere must decide whether he's ready to accept the rigors of preparing for another season of NHL hockey.

Briere said:

That’s kind of the big question: Can I imagine committing to it?

If I decide to play, I have to commit to full out training. I’m working out and I’m staying in good shape as of right now. But if I decide to play I’ve got about two months left to really take it to the next level to be ready for next season.

His stint in Colorado took a toll, he added.

"The kids were resilient and they hung in there," Briere said. "But you come to a point where you have to think about your life, their life and who you’re affecting with your decisions. As hockey players, you do something your whole life and the decisions you have to make get tougher and tougher."

Briere has appeared in 973 career games, with 307 goals and 389 assists to his name. His legend grew in the postseason, however, where he scored 53 goals and recorded 116 points in 124 games, getting as far as the Stanley Cup Final with the Flyers in 2010.

Whether the pursuit of hockey's greatest prize entices him to return remains to be seen.

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Daniel Briere willing to play close to home, still considering retirement
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