As Simon voiced back in April after the Flyers’ season came to a close, he would like to stay in the Flyers organization, where he returned last February after spending one season with the Tampa Bay Lightning and one and a half seasons with the LA Kings. Given the team’s situation with their roster and salary cap, it’s understandable that they haven’t given Gagne any offer. Yet… At least that’s what Simon hopes for.

“I had two really good meetings, with both ‘Lavy’ [coach Peter Laviolette] and ‘Homer’ after the season ended. They thought that I did a lot of good things toward the end of the season and liked what I brought to the team.”

“Right now, they have some money issues, which would prevent us from doing anything. The salary cap is complicated and there are rules.”

“My agent has kept in touch with ‘Homer’ and he told us that he would call us before the draft.”

Simon is also confident with his condition, he believes he’s in a good shape.

“I’m 33 and you can start to see the end. I’m really happy with how the season ended. I hadn’t played a lot of hockey. I was hurt, and then the lockout, I only played in the [2012] Stanley Cup finals. Maybe four games in a whole calendar year. It took me some time. But I’m still able to play.”

source: Philly.com

Categories: Simon

In the latest article on Philly.com Simon talks about his future and expresses his wish to stay in Philadelphia. Here are his quotes:

On his past with injuries etc.:

“You wake up and you feel it. You look at all of the stuff you have gone through – the playoffs, all the games you’ve had to play, all of the injuries, the surgeries. It’s part of the game. I’m not the only one who feels that; there are a lot of guys in here who feel the same way.”

On how he feels right now:

“I’m starting to enjoy the game again, that’s been the main issue. The last 2 years have been a little bit tough. Health was an issue. Not playing as much as I wanted was an issue. I’m back to being healthy again. I’m starting to feel good on the ice. Even when we’re losing right now, I’m having fun coming to the rink. That’s something that, to start the season, I lost a little bit. All that helped me get a good feeling again about the game.”

On Philadelphia:

“This is a place, I always say, that’s maybe the best place for me to play. Is that because it’s the only place I’ve really played? I don’t know. Philly is one of the places that I have good memories, good friends, and my family is comfortable there.”

On the future:

“It would be an easy choice if ‘Homer’ would come to me and ask me to stay. We’ll see. I’m not sure if they’re going to want to make a lot of changes, or what they are thinking. It’s tough to look at our team, tough to judge why we play so poorly sometimes. We don’t have a full lineup, it’s a shortened season.”

On the ‘money issue’:

“I’m at the point of my career where I made really good money for a while. As a player, your goal is to win the Stanley Cup. I did that [with the Kings last season]. I still want to win the Stanley Cup. At the end of the day, money is just a small question. Being happy is important. If I like the place, I’ll make things work – for everyone to be happy, to make sure that it doesn’t hurt the team.”

source: Philly.com

Categories: Simon

A little over a week ago you might’ve noticed people claiming on Twitter that Simon had a tumor removed. Even though I tried to disprove those rumors, there were obviously still some people who believed the cancer talk. John Hoven from Mayor’s Manor fortunately talked directly to Simon about it and he dispeled the incorrect information. Here’s a bit from Mayor’s article:

Simon Gagne has enough to worry about without some people thinking he had cancer too.

It seems much of the recent confusion stemmed from a tweet posted by an Edmonton reporter when the Kings were in Canada to play the Oilers.

Because some people read too much into that tweet, Gagne offered a little more clarity on the situation.

“It was free, it was cancer free,” said the 32-year old left wing. “They had to call it a tumor because it’s a mass on your neck. As soon as you have a mass, it’s called a tumor. So, I was a little scared too when they told me that at first. But, then they explained it’s not anywhere any close to cancer. It’s just like a mass that they remove and after they removed it they sent it to the lab to make sure everything was fine.”

Yes, not all tumors are cancerous.

 source: Mayor’s Manor

Categories: Simon

Businessman Réal Breton gathered a dream team around his project of bringing the Trois-Rivières Draveurs back. Simon Gagne and Martin Gélinas could join the already impressive list of supporters (amongts whom are Geoff Molson and Bob Hartley).  According to the Echo de Shawinigan and TVA Trois-Rivières, Breton had a chat with the LA Kings’ forward and Calgary Flames’ assistant coach.

While there were indeed talks, different sources state that Gagne and Gélinas have not given an answer yet.

The news that someone would bring the team back to life made several veterans of the QMJHL (Québec Major Junior Hockey League) take an interest in the project, and consider an investment in it.

source: Hebdos Regionaux; Big thank you to my friend Audrey for the translation from French!

Categories: Simon

As I informed you on Twitter, Simon arrived to LA few days ago. On Thursday he took part in informal practice. Following the skating session with his teammates he talked to Gann Matsuda from Frozen Royalty. Here’s some bits from the article and quotes from Simon. You can read the full article and listen to the audio here.

Shortly after the Kings won the 2012 Stanley Cup Championship, Gagne underwent neck surgery.

“When I cut my hair in Tampa Bay [where he played in the 2010-11 season], I noticed the bump on the back [of my neck],” said Gagne. “I hurt my neck that year.”

Gagne went on to say that he noticed “tightness” in his neck long before that. However, he was unable to see it because his hair was longer, and it covered the bump.

He also indicated that the neck problems may have caused many of his post-concussion syndrome-like symptoms.

“The neck problem was going on for four or five years,” he explained. “After the surgery, a lot of things got a little more clear. I had concussions in the past, even last year. But who knows. Maybe it was more of a neck issue, but I didn’t want to take any chances, with my history, and that’s what I like about the medical staff here. They didn’t want to take any chances. They waited the right amount of time for me to get back on the ice, but the neck was a bigger problem than [originally] thought.”

But if Gagne knew about the neck problem for the last couple of years, why wait so long to get it corrected?

“I went to Montreal [to find a specialist], even in Tampa Bay, I tried to find someone, but everyone agreed that I was going to have to play with it, taking medicine or injections when it got bad,” said Gagne. “That’s what I did for the last two years.”

“We found a doctor who was willing to do the surgery here in Los Angeles,” added Gagne. “Before that, even in Philadelphia and Tampa Bay, there was no doctor who wanted to touch it. It was a mass—doctors were a little scared to go in and remove it. But I’m glad I found someone willing to [perform the delicate surgery], and now I’m feeling really good because of it.”

“When I met that doctor here in Los Angeles (Dr. Dennis R. Maceri, M.D. of the Keck Medical Center of the University of Southern California), he knew, almost right away, that he was going to be able to do it. It wasn’t the first time he’d seen that. Before, all the doctors I saw before, even neck specialists, they weren’t willing to touch it. They thought it was going to be too tricky.”

The rest of the story and more Simon quotes on dealing with the lockout can be found here.

source:The Frozen Royalty

Categories: Simon

Hello dear visitors! It is a big pleasure to come to you with such a positive update. I’m pretty sure you’re all well informed already, but just in case – the NHL lockout is over. The ratification of the deal is still needed, the schedule needs to be finalized but none of this should stand in the way between us and the NHL hockey. The shortened season (apparently of 48 games) should start on Jan 19. More specific details will definitely come in the following days. Today, I’m bringing you Simon’s reaction and comments to the agreement.

A few hours after the announcement of the end of the lockout, Simon Gagné had already scheduled a game, on Sunday. And he was not going to miss this one, for it was one of the last opportunities to play with his son Matthew on their outdoor rink in Lac-Beauport. Starting next week, the Los Angeles Kings’ forward will be helping his teammates defend their Stanley Cup title.

But the 32 years old left winger knows the National Hockey League Players’ Association (NHLPA) still has a lot to do to tie the loose ends of the contract. He isn’t planning on leaving Québec until the union of representative tells him so. He still is relieved: “It took a lot of time, but I knew we’d get there. I’m not going to lie: I thought it would be over before Christmas, I didn’t think it’d go that far. But it’s done now. The important thing is that there will be a least half a season”.

Eight years of peace.

After this long process, Gagné reckons that even though the players granted a lot to the owners, they kept their ground. The most important is that they agreed on a long term deal, and that will settle hockey’s fate for the next 8 years, at least.

“Bettman is tough, so we figured that if we agreed on a 5 year deal, there would be another lock-out after that. At the same time, we didn’t want to sign a long-term deal because we weren’t sure the new contract would be that good to us. Here, we can decide whether or not we want to sign again for two more years after these 8 years”, Gagné explained on Sunday.

The agreement comes with a system of revenue sharing established at 50-50, associated with a compensatory package of $ 300 million. The share of incomes goes from $150 millions to 260$. The retirement fund can now be compared to the one going on in MLB.

In the end, the attention focused on that last part. Although, unlike the salary cap, it wasn’t a major issue.

“Pension plans were a huge discussion issue. Both parties knew what they wanted. I don’t think it was the most important matter, but it was the last to settle for an agreement to be proposed” claims Gagné. Scot L. Beckenbaugh, the mediator, played a key role in this matter. “I talked to some of the players who were there on Saturday. Around midnight, people wanted to stop negotiating and go to bed. He was the one who kept them going” Gagné revealed.

The Kings can hope

Simon Gagné still got a positive thing out the lockout: he had more time to get better. He will start this season in a good shape, after being injured many times during these last years. That’s got to be good for the Kings!

“Even though I lost half a season that I will never get back, the lockout allowed me to spend some time with my family and get back in a great shape, even though I already felt great in July. My body had time to rest, and that’s harder and harder as you grow old,” said the skilled player who had a mass removed from his neck right after he’d won the Stanley Cup last June.

Teamed up with stars players such as Jonathan Quick, Anze Kopitar, Justin Williams, Drew Doughty and Dustin Brown, Simon Gagné’s shape will allow the Kings to hope for another great season.

“We still have the same core players. There hasn’t been any big trade or free agent… It’s the same team that won the Cup” he notes.

Like the Quebecer, other Los Angeles Kings had the time to rest after a summer of celebration. All champions don’t have this kind of luxury.

“It’s not only a physical rest, it’s also a mental rest. Even though I didn’t win the Cup with the Flyers in 2010, I thought hockey came back quickly. I would have liked another month and a half of rest after that! The lockout gave us some extra time, it’s good for the last Champions. Anyway, it can’t be a bad thing.”

Gagné now hopes that the many fans who followed the Kings will still show them suport.

“It may be harder for a city like Los Angeles to get over a lockout if we don’t go far in the playoffs. But our comeback to the city might get some fuel because of our Cup win, when we raise the banner…”

source: Le Soleil; huge thank you to my friend Audrey for the translation from French!

Categories: NHL