Jaromir Jagr ponders 2018 Winter Olympics if no NHL deal surfaces
Yes, his 45-year-old legs would likely need some accommodating, but for many in the hockey world, it remains outright maddening the Jaromir Jagr is basically still begging for an NHL deal.
It’s tough to come to grips with the idea of waving goodbye to a generational scorer when Jagr arguably remains skilled enough to help a team, yet Tuesday presented a tantalizing potential silver lining. What if Jagr suited up one last time* for the Czech Republic in the 2018 Winter Olympics?
Czech TV station Nova Sport’s Zdenek Matejovsky and also reporter Darina Vymětalíková passed along Jagr’s interesting comments, which can be found (and Google-translated) in full here.
If Jaromir Jagr will not sign in the NHL he told the Czech TV in Prague today that there is a chance he may play for Czechs at the Olympics!— Zdenek Matejovsky (@zedmat) September 5, 2017
That’s a pretty big “if,” mind you.
He said that his priority is NHL, 2nd option is:"Europe,but not necessarily KHL" and the other possibility is Kladno (Czech) and WOG.— Darina (@darina_vymetali) September 5, 2017
This isn’t the first time we’ve seen the 2018 Winter Olympics surface as at least a tangential option for aging players, whether it be Team Canada showing some interest in veteran stars Jarome Iginla and Shane Doan or Ryan Malone resurfacing seemingly in part to try to suit up for the U.S.
The difference here is that Jagr seems to have the most left - maybe by far - of all of those candidates.
It would be extremely cool to see, perhaps drawing parallels to Teemu Selanne’s fantastic swan song with Finland during the 2014 Winter Olympics.
Would that top seeing Jagr in the NHL for at least one last run? That’s debatable, yet it’s easily the most palatable situation if Jagr’s NHL days really are over.
* - Actually, is it even safe to say this would be the last time? The guy’s a machine, after all.