Jagr a smash success in Czech return; Nedved had to be there

Getty
1 Comment

Despite being wary about how much he can play on an injured knee, Jaromir Jagr made quite the triumphant return to hockey in the Czech Republic this weekend.

Suiting up for Kladno of the WSM Liga, he helped his team win 7-2 against HC Benatky, and that game checked off quite a few “How cool is that?” boxes.

  • Despite dealing with that wonky knee, Jagr collected three assists.
  • Mike Johnston of Sportsnet notes that demand for the game prompted an arena change from a 2,000-seat spot to one that could accommodate 7,500 fans.
  • While looking through this roughly translated game summary, you may notice the name “Nedved.” Yes, it turns out that was Petr Nedved, another memorable former NHL player who enjoyed some famous moments with the Pittsburgh Penguins.

NHL.com’s Igor Eronko notes that Nedved had quite the game himself, scoring a goal and an assist; he actually ended up playing 24 minutes to Jagr’s 20. Nedved returned to play this specific game because Jagr was there. Jagr’s team ended up beating Nedved’s on this day.

Yes, that’s extremely cool.

[After returning home, Jagr says he’s far from finished.]

  • This crowd reaction is fun, as is Kladno’s vaguely Jagr-ish logo:

  • This might be the best footage to come of it:

  • Breathe easy: it looks like his mullet is intact:

Is it too hasty to demand an NHL return for Jagr already? Please?

James O’Brien is a writer for Pro Hockey Talk on NBC Sports. Drop him a line at phtblog@nbcsports.com or follow him on Twitter @cyclelikesedins.