Simon Gagne’s attempt to stage a comeback after being out of the NHL for a season was successful as he participated in 23 games with Boston. On Jan. 12 though, he made it known that he was permanently leaving the Bruins.
“The last month has been extremely difficult for me with my father being sick and his passing,” Gagne said at the time. “To play in the NHL you have to be 100% mentally, emotionally and physically committed to the game. At this time I know that I cannot be close to those levels. The Bruins organization and my teammates have been great to my family and I during this time.”
The Bruins suspended him so that they could maintain a full roster. They took another step towards finalizing the process on Wednesday by placing him on unconditional waivers. If he clears, he will be released, according to an Associated Press source.
Gagne, who is a veteran of 822 NHL games, averaged 11:18 minutes per contest and recorded four points during his tenure with Boston. At the age of 34, he still might eventually attempt to return to the NHL once more.
Simon Gagne’s brief tenure with the Boston Bruins has come to an unfortunate end.
From the club:
Bruins General Manager Peter Chiarelli announced today that forward Simon Gagne has decided not to return to the team this season due to personal reasons. Given his decision, the Bruins have changed Gagne’s status to “suspended player”.
“At this time Simon feels that he has to be home with his family and he has the complete support of the Boston Bruins organization with this decision,” said Chiarelli. “Given Simon’s decision not to return to the team, we have to change his status to maintain a full roster. I spoke to Simon about this, and he assured me that we have his full support with this status change.”
“The last month has been extremely difficult for me with my father being sick and his passing,” said Gagne. “To play in the NHL you have to be 100% mentally, emotionally and physically committed to the game. At this time I know that I cannot be close to those levels. The Bruins organization and my teammates have been great to my family and I during this time.”
Gagne, 34, signed with the Bruins in mid-October after playing with the team through training camp and the preseason. The move marked his return to the NHL after taking a one-year hiatus; he scored three goals and four points in 23 games for Boston, averaging 11:18 TOI per night.
Gagne first left the B’s on Dec. 10 to be with his father, who passed away later that month following a battle with liver cancer.
The Boston Bruins have recalled forward Craig Cunningham from the American Hockey League’s Providence Bruins.
As CSNNE.com’s Joe Haggerty points out, Cunningham’s recall is likely insurance for David Krejci (lower body), who remains a question mark.
Simon Gagne is also unavailable Thursday when the Bruins play host to Chicago as he has taken a leave of absence to be with his ailing father.
Cunningham was recalled by the Bruins on Nov. 30, but did not appear in a game before being reassigned Dec. 3.
The 24-year-old appeared in three games with Boston to start the season averaging 11:26 in ice time.
Cunningham is pointless in five career NHL games with the Bruins.
In 21 AHL games this season, Cunningham has five goals and 15 assists.