Today the flyers reacquired Gagne from the LA Kings for a conditional fourth-round pick in 2013 that they had lying around from the Phoenix Cyotes. The condition is that IF the Flyers qualify for the Stanley Cup Playoffs, they will transfer their third-round pick in the 2013 draft, if not they’ll get a fourth round pick.
“I didn’t want to cry. I was trying not to, but it was hard,” Gagne said about the news that he would be returning to Philly.
“…It’s like going back home. I know everybody there and i’m going back where it all started.”
Fans have already started voicing their enthusiasm for Gagne’s return.
Gagne spent his first 10 NHL seasons with Philadelphia, scoring a career-high 47 goals during the 2005-06 season. The Flyers traded him to Tampa Bay in 2010, and the Kings signed him a year later
The left winger returned to play for the Kings in the playoffs last season after a concussion kept him out for several months, and conributed to their stanley cup win. Currently Gagne is in a scoring slump of 11 games with only 5 assists. He last played on Feb. 17th in Chicago. Gagne reportedly didn’t ask to be traded, but confirmation from Paul Holmgren that he would be getting a lot of play time probably makes the trade that much more welcome. That is if returning to his old team wasn’t good enough news.
“Health-wise I feel really good. Hockey-wise it’s a little tougher the last couple weeks, in and out of the lineup and not playing much,” Gagne said. “Trying to understand what was my role here with the Kings this year, trying to figure out what’s going on.
“It’s part of the game and now it’s behind me and it’s time to focus on what I have to do to help the Flyers to win.”
The Flyers lineup is being repeatedly weakened by injuries, most recently Matt Read out for at least 6 weeks with a ribcage injury, and rookie Tye McGinn with a broken orbital bone, after his fight with Maple Leafs Mike Brown on Monday. The depleted offense will surely be glad to have a vetran like Gagne to boost their ranks. Hopefully the change of scenery and a nostalgic return will be just what he needs to get back into the swing of things.