Yes, Jaromir Jagr is 45-years-old. He’ll turn 46 in February.
So, yes, even for a fitness freak like Jagr, it’s likely that he’d probably not be the best fit for a team that plays at a frenetic pace. To get the most out of the living legend, a team would have to provide a nurturing environment. There are also questions about what sort of role he’d accept and how much money he’d settle for.
Even with all of those disclaimers under consideration, it’s maddening that we’re in late September and Jagr continues to put out semi-sarcastic cry for help videos.
So, what’s the latest on Jagr, then?
Well, to some extent, it’s useful to consider the process of elimination.
Sports-Express’ Igor Eronko reports that Jagr is open-minded about the KHL, though the NHL is first choice. Jagr acknowledged that participating in the 2018 Winter Olympics would be a draw in the process.
One thing he isn’t open to: a PTO with an NHL team.
While there’s actually some logic to a tryout – teams might want to see how well he can move/what kind of immediate chemistry Jagr could find – it does seem a little … demeaning to a first-ballot Hall of Famer who, frankly, is still producing solid numbers.
Eronko reports that Jagr said he’s talking to three-to-four teams, while Pierre LeBrun reports that two-to-three NHL teams are speaking with Jagr’s reps in the latest edition of TSN’s Insider Trading.
(Hey, both could be correct if Jagr’s including KHL suitors in his estimate.)
LeBrun also notes the idea Jagr is ruling out, beyond a PTO: retirement.
Jagr doesn’t want to hang up his skates, even if it means not playing in the NHL, which would bum out a slew of hockey fans (raises hand).
Naturally, there are creative “have your cake and eat it too” scenarios. Perhaps Jagr could sign a KHL contract with an NHL out clause of some kind, playing in the 2018 Winter Olympics, and then ink a deal with a contender who a) he wants to play for and b) is now convinced he still “has it?”
There are plenty of possibilities, and many of them are fun to think about.
Jagr needing to try out for a team – or worse, retire – is not so fun to think about.