The Washington Times - September 16, 2011, 12:46AM

Give Dave Prior credit for looking on the bright side: Having no Steffen Soberg at rookie camp, the Capitals goaltending coach said, gave Philipp Grubauer and Brandon Anderson more time and room to work.

Soberg, a team spokesman said Sunday, was not attending because he was still deciding whether to play in North America – as the Caps want – or stay in Europe this season. Prior said soon after he was under the belief that it was still a “likelihood” Soberg would play for the Swift Current Broncos of the Western Hockey League. Swift Current’s coach seemed optimistic, too.

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According to a report in Soberg’s native Norway, though, that’s probably not going to happen. In an interview with Norwegian newspaper Dagbladet.no, as translated by Malin of the Hockeyramblings blog, the 18-year-old Soberg said he’s not ready to make the leap across the Atlantic Ocean just yet.

Broncos coach and general manager Mark Lamb, in an interview with Shawn Mullin’s Swift Current Broncos Blog, made mention of Soberg going home to deal with personal problems – something Soberg contradicted, per Dagbladet.no.

“My only reason for going home is that I don’t want to be there,” he said. “I have told them from the beginning that I don’t want to be there. I’m not depressed or anything like that, I just don’t want to be there.”

Asked by the newspaper about this burning a bridge with the Caps as far as an NHL future, Soberg reportedly was not concerned.

”It won’t ruin anything for me,” he said. “They have told me that they don’t view me as a bad prospect if I choose to play outside of North America, but they would have preferred that I play in North America. I’m not at all ruling out that I will play over there sometime in the future, but right now I just don’t want to be there.”

Read the full translation from Hockeyramblings here. Check out the interview with Lamb here. And here are Prior’s comments to The Washington Times on Soberg from earlier in the week.