MONTREAL – Vincent Lecavalier is excited at the prospect of having free agent left winger Alex Tanguay with the Tampa Bay Lightning this season.
A report on RDS television in Montreal said Tanguay has agreed to a contract with the Lightning, contingent on passing a medical examination. Tanguay had off-season surgery to fix a nagging shoulder problem.
“All the guys I talked to who played with him said he’s unbelievable,” Lecavalier said Saturday. “He’s going to bring a lot of offence to our team.
“He’s a hard-working guy, a good guy and you never have enough of those guys. I played with him in the world juniors (in 1998). I’m happy he’s part of it.”
The Bolts’ captain and winger Martin St. Louis reportedly made a lobbying effort to bring Tanguay to Tampa Bay.
Lecavalier said the team will be stronger next season with the addition of Tanguay, former Vancouver Canucks defenceman Mattias Ohlund and second overall draft pick Victor Hedman.
“It’s a big season,” he said. “We didn’t have a good season last year but the team has changed and has been given a new dimension.”
Tanguay, a playmaking winger, had 16 goals and 41 points in only 50 games last season for the Montreal Canadiens. He suffered a separated shoulder on Dec. 30 that caused him to miss 28 games. Tanguay said after the Canadiens season ended that the surgery was not related to the injury suffered during the season.
Montreal had acquired him in June 2008 from the Calgary Flames.
Lecavalier was attending the NASCAR Nationwide series race at Circuit Gilles Villeneuve, where he acted as honorary starter for one of the support races, the Rolex Grand-Am.
He is also friends with former Canadiens defenceman Patrice Brisebois, who is racing in the NASCAR Canadian Tire series event.
“It’s pretty cool,” he said. “It’s a little nerve-wracking, but the best part is doing the flag.”
He has taken race driving lessons with Brisebois’ coach, but said he isn’t about to start entering races.