With the Philadelphia Flyers struggling this season, it seems that Paul Holmgren has decided to take this club back to its roots. Yesterday it was announced that Simon Gagne has been traded to the Flyers from the Los Angeles Kings for a conditional fourth round draft pick that was originally acquired from the Phoenix Coyotes.
Simon Gagne was drafted first round by the Flyers in 1998 and played in Philadelphia for 10 seasons. In his 10 seasons in Philadelphia Simon put up some pretty impressive numbers. He is 9th in Flyers all-time goals, 10th in points and games played, 4th among Flyers Left Wings in goals and points, 8th in Flyers playoff goals and tied for 7th in playoff game winning goals. He led the team in goals for the 2001-02, 2005-06, and 2006-07 seasons. He led in points and was named Flyers MVP in the 2005-06 and 2006-07 seasons. He also played in the All-Star game twice while he was a Flyer in the 2000-01 and 2006-07 seasons.
The question now is where he will fit in the current Flyers roster. With the impressive numbers he has over Flyers history some say they want him playing on the first line with Claude Giroux. However with the line of Giroux, Jakub Voracek, and Scott Hartnell being the one of the only ones producing and the less than impressive numbers Gagne has with the Kings, having him on the first line would be very unlikely. The most likely place for him will be on a line with previous line mate Mike Knuble, at least that would be the smartest move because of the pre-existing chemistry.
There is no doubt that this trade has made tonight’s game against the Washington Capitals more anticipated by Flyers fan especially coming off Monday’s loss by the hands of the Toronto Maple Leafs. Hopefully we will see a difference in play similar to what happened after the loss to the Montreal Canadiens earlier this season, when they beat the New York Islanders 7-0 and then the Pittsburgh Penguins 6-5.