Tampa Bay Lightning LW Simon Gagne wants to play Game 3; D Pavel Kubina still mum, likely worse
As expected, the Tampa Bay Lightning will be without left wing Simon Gagne and Pavel Kubina for Game 2 of Tampa Bay's Eastern Conference semifinal series with the Capitals. But Gagne said on Sunday he feels pretty good and hopes to play in Game 3 Tuesday at the St. Pete Times Forum. Kubina, on the other hand, was not made available to the media Sunday, leading to the presumption he is in worse shape than Gagne.
For Game 2, forward Blair Jones will replace Gagne and Randy Jones, who has not played since Match 7 because of a high ankle sprain, will replace Kubina.
Both Gagne and Kubina took severe blows to the head in Friday's Game 1. Gagne's head bounced off the ice in the first period after he was checked by Scott Hannan. Gagne's body was parallel to the ice when Hannan gave him an extra shove in the shoulder, which pointed Gagne's head downward. Kubina's head hit the end glass in the second period when he was checked and took an elbow to the back of the head from Jason Chimera. Chimera was called for roughing. There was no supplemental discipline by the league.
Gagne was in fine spirits Sunday. He said he never lost consciousness, as had been presumed. He said he recalls the entire incident and does not blame Hannan for the clean hit. He characterized himself as day-to-day.
"I know Scott. I played with him in the world championship. Like I said, nothing against him, he hit me clean, I got off balance and I was not able to protect myself when I fell on the ice. It's part of hockey. Stuff like that is going to happen. What he did, just to come give me a little tap on the pads to see I was okay, I know hes’ feeling bad about it, but like I said it was not his fault, it's something that is part of hockey."
On his conversation on the ice with head athletic trainer Tommy Mulligan:
"You're a little shaky, that’s for sure. You just knocked your head on the ice. Took a couple seconds to get all that together. First thing he asked me where I was, and the good thing, all the questions he asked me was right. I remember the score, I explained to him what happened too on the hit. That was a good sign."
On trying to call his wife from trainers' room:
"At first, they asked me for the number, they tried to call her. I'm sure she had some phone calls from my mom and dad and stuff, so it was a busy line at that time. After that, like I said, I think it's tougher for them than on yourself. Sometimes they're watching what's going on, not knowing whats going on. She said I was not moving on the ice. She started to be scared about it. You think about the worst. It was hard to see, she was crying on the phone and stuff like that. But you try to give her some good stuff that now it's okay and it was part of the game."