Kings GM doesn’t expect Simon Gagne back this season

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The Los Angeles Kings are red-hot right now, enjoying a run that earned them a slim Pacific Division lead. The addition of former Philadelphia Flyers Jeff Carter and Mike Richards has played a role in that, but one cannot help but wonder if another former high-scoring Philly forward would really put them over the top.

Unfortunately for the Kings, GM Dean Lombardi doesn’t believe that Simon Gagne will be back for them this season, according to a report by Rich Hammond.

Lombardi said that he “doubts” that the dangerous winger could return from concussion issues that have sidelined him since Dec. 26. That’s the sad story of Gagne’s career, really, injuries – particularly concussions – have short-circuited what would otherwise be a borderline All-Star producer’s effectiveness.

It’s not exactly as if the Kings could plead ignorance about his injury history, as that’s the neon-light-obvious reason why an otherwise potent player attracted little interest on the free agent market.

If Kings fans want a glimmer of hope, Hammond points out that Gagne is being evaluated on “a weekly basis,” so perhaps he could bounce back if the Kings manage to stick around in the playoffs for a while. Both of those matters seem like big “ifs,” but Gagne being healthy might actually be less likely.