Simon Gagne finally feels at home. The Lightning left wing didn't believe it would take this long. Oh, he knew it wouldn't be easy. You don't leave a team and a community after 11 seasons and simply turn a page. But that it took until January for Gagne and his family to really settle in blindsided him. "I figured I had the whole summer to get over it," Gagne said Thursday of July's trade from the Flyers. "But it was hard on me." It is easier to talk about now. Gagne, a two-time 40-goal scorer, has nine goals and 15 points in 34 games. But in what is his best stretch of the season, he has six goals and eight points in his past nine games, and three goals and five points in his past three. His line with center Vinny Lecavalier and right wing Teddy Purcell is clicking, too. "It's fun to play hockey now," Gagne said. Compare that with the 18 games Gagne missed from Oct. 22 through Nov. 27 because of a neck injury and how his conditioning suffered because of it. Then there was the pressure of relocating wife Karine and son Matthew, 1, from Voorhees, N.J., a community Gagne said his family loved. Not to mention the pressure Gagne felt to break his ties to the Flyers, the only NHL team for which he had played.
Simon Gagne settled in and in a groove
Tampa Bay Times | Feb 4