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04-02-2004, 11:27 AM
Join Date: Jun 2002
Location: Ottawa, Ontario
Hi everyone. Ok, I had a bit of troubles with my Internet service over the past little while and I wanted to take the opportunity to respond to an article that was written by Panayiotis or whatever his name is. In his article, he was slagging everyone who suggested we trade Gagne and he asked where those of were who were slagging on Gagne. I'm right here. I said it before the season started that if Gagne didn't score 35 goals, his season should be considered a failure and he should be dealt. I'm still sticking to that to this day. Gagne has only caught fire as of late. He's streaky and he can sometimes float on the ice. Granted, he's a great defensive player, but this team doesn't need great defensive players. This team needs great offensive players. The trading of Justin Williams should have been the wake up call Gagne needed to kick his game into overdrive. He hasn't done it.
There was no reason why Gagne couldn't have scored 35 (or even 40 goals) this season. The argument that he was playing with Primeau doesn't hold water because Gagne's best season came with Primeau being his centerman. Don't get me wrong, Gagne is a good player. He isn't a great player though and that's the difference. When I watch Gagne play, it's the must infuriating thing to watch because HE CAN be a great player. What someone needs to do is question his commitment to being that great player. Someone needs to question if he's content just being a good player. He reminds me an awful lot of Vince Carter. Carter could very easily be the best player in the NBA, if he wanted to. Instead, Carter is quick to pass the buck onto everyone else and doesn't take the opportunity by the throat and seize it. That's Gagne in a nutshell.
Gagne has had five years now to become that top notch winger the team needs. He's been the one who has been touted as the next great Flyer and the player the team will build around. I'm sorry, but I don't think Gagne is a franchise player. He's a good player, but he isn't great. More importantly, he isn't a franchise player. It wouldn't surprise me that if the Flyers don't win the cup this year, you see Clark start dismantling the team and that Gagne be one of the first to go. He's young enough that he might fetch something decent. I think that if he does go, you'll see the team be built around Pitkanen, Esche, Carter, Richards, Ruzicka, etc..... Sorry Panayiotis, but I stand behind what I said earlier this season and I won't change that.
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