Flyers' leading scorer from last season Gagne returns

NEW YORK -- Philadelphia forward Simon Gagne returned to the
Philadelphia Flyers lineup Monday night after missing four games due to

Gagne was cleared for full activity over the weekend and then
practiced Sunday. He came through that well, and reported no
problems Monday morning after skating again.

"I didn't have a lot of time to practice," he said. "I felt
good yesterday, I woke up today and felt good."

Flyers coach John Stevens said he would monitor Gagne's ice
time, but didn't have a certain number of minutes in mind. He
didn't expect to use the star left winger in penalty-killing
situations as he normally would.

Gagne took 21 shifts on Monday, logging 17 minutes, 30 seconds of ice time. He had five shots on goal but didn't score in the Flyers' 2-0 loss.

"I want to play that first game and I want to go through it,"
he said. "There is not a better way to test how I feel."

He hadn't played since he was knocked out of a game against
Florida on Oct. 24, when his jaw crashed into the shoulder of
Panthers defenseman Jay Bouwmeester on a high check. Gagne tried to
play a few shifts, but left the game after he experienced

Gagne, who led the Flyers last season with 41 goals and 68
points, had four goals and four assists in his first eight games
this season.