Apparently the great 68 is not even discussing terms with NHL clubs over a return to the league he once dominated. Jagr’s agent, Jaroslav Zidek, said that Jaromir was only talking to KHL teams at the moment with SKA of St Petersburg apparently leading the way. Once again playing devil’s advocate, what would Jagr really mean if he shocked the world and came back to NY?
The Good: Jagr still possess unbelievable skill, at a level not even Gaborik can match – indeed there are not that many current NHL superstars throughout the league that boast the skill set of Jagr. An infusion of such skill is sorely needed for the Rangers. He’d help the power play and certainly alleviate some of the pressure and attention off the Rangers other skilled star, Gaborik. He proved at the recent World Championship he has plenty left to give, but at what capacity and on what line remains to be seen.
The Bad: Can his ego survive not being the ‘main guy’ if he chose a place like New York? Would his recruitment retard the development of a young player or block the chances of acquiring a younger skilled forward? After all, there are only so many spots to go around. Then there are wage demands; while they may not be at the level he commanded in his previous turn on Broadway it’s unclear what he’d expect to come back – surely it would not be peanuts. One would also need to consider whether he would mesh with a coach like Tortorella? Unlikely.
The truth: With every passing rumour from his agent, out of the KHL or in the domestic Czech media it seems an NHL return is becoming less likely. A return to a club like the Rangers, on a distinct youth movement seems even more unlikely. Yes, he could certainly add to the current Rangers but the key question is at what cost? If Sather hasn’t been in contact yet, there’s a pretty high chance he won’t be anytime soon. It seems it is time to remember Jagr purely on his past Blueshirt merits.