Forward Simon Gagne was traded from Philadelphia to Tampa Bay on Monday as another "victim" of the salary cap. Philly needed to create some cap space, and for Gagne, that meant being traded.â†µ
Interestingly, Gagne had a no-trade clause, meaning he got final approval of any deal, as he could decide not to waive the clause in his contract. That clause gave him the power to approve or deny deals with certain teams that had expressed interest in him, and one of those teams was reportedly the Red Wings.â†µ
Surprisingly, the Detroit Red Wings had expressed interest and wanted to add Gagne, but with less than $4 million in cap space, the idea of joining one of the most successful franchises in hockey didn’t seem too appealing. The same can be said for his hometown Montreal Canadiens.â†µ
Ironically, it was conversations with former Red Wing and Tampa GM Steve Yzerman sold him on the idea that he could become part of the Lightning’s rebuilding process, and Gagne feels they are a playoff team that will only get better.
Gagne cared so much about cap space because he wants a long-term deal at some point and doesn't want to be a cap casualty again. That, along with not wanting to play in the Western Conference due to the amount of travel, killed the Wings' chances of making a move for Gagne, which definitely would have upgraded the roster considering all Tampa Bay gave up was Matt Walker and a fourth-round pick. Oh well, at least Ken Holland tried to make something happen.