Simon Gagne was hopeful.

He was hopeful, but uncertain.

A day after suffering his third concussion of the season, Gagne said his symptoms were not as severe as what he endured after his first two, which kept him out for a total of 30 games.

"I feel so-so," the Flyers forward said after being examined yesterday morning. "I am not feeling quite right. I am feeling a little bit off balance. That's the best way to describe the way I feel today.

"It is very tough to believe that something like this has happened again. I am very frustrated, that's for sure. It is hard to find the perfect word to describe the way I feel right now."

Gagne was hit by Jordan Staal in the first period of the Flyers' loss to Pittsburgh Sunday. He left the bench dizzy and did not return for the second period.

He was diagnosed with a "mild concussion" by the Penguins' doctors, flew to Long Island with the team and then was driven home. He will not be in the lineup against the Islanders tonight, and when he will return is a huge unknown. There is no indication when he could even begin exercising.

Following his examination, Gagne answered questions submitted by the media through team public relations spokesman Zack Hill.

"We think I have another mild concussion," Gagne said. "Not a big one. The way I feel, we think I may have hit the balance center, which is located right below your neck and skull.

"That's where I got hit [Sunday], so that's why we think that is the way I feel off balance right now. That's pretty much the only symptom I have, being off balance. When you feel like that, that's when they know you may have a mild concussion."

If this had been his first concussion this season, the injury would probably not keep Gagne out for long, but that is not the case.

"The only thing I can say right now is that I don't think it is that bad. I know the symptoms were definitely worse the last time," he said. "Hopefully I will feel better very soon. The doctor said I could feel very good in the next couple of days. I just have to take it 1 day at a time and see what happens.

"It is always difficult to think about what could happen, like if I go back and I am not ready and stuff like that. I am positive and I always will stay positive with what is going on."

Gagne is very familiar with how concussions can impact a career, based on what they did to Keith Primeau and Eric Lindros.

"I think what [Primeau] and Eric went through was a little bit different than me," Gagne said. "Those guys had a hard time waking up in the morning and had a hard time responding physically.

"In my case, I don't think that this is a problem. I feel like I am more off balance today but physically I feel fine. I feel that I am sharp physically. It is very tough for me to think what is going to happen in the future but I believe I will find a way to get through it and hopefully I will be fine to play again this year."

Winger promoted

The Flyers called up left wing Kyle Greentree, 24, to fill Simon Gagne's spot. Greentree is second on the Phantoms in scoring with 16 goals and 21 assists for 37 points in 48 games. He has 13 points in his last 10 games. *

The Flyers called up left wing Kyle Greentree, 24, to fill Simon Gagne's spot. Greentree is second on the Phantoms in scoring with 16 goals and 21 assists for 37 points in 48 games. He has 13 points in his last 10 games. *