Sep 12, 2013, 1:44 PM EDT
Jaromir Jagr‘s time in New Jersey is off to an inauspicious start.
The 41-year-old forward left his first on-ice appearance with the Devils prematurely, with what the club is calling “soreness,” according to NHL.com:
Jagr seemed to be wincing a short time after taking the ice with his group here at AmeriHealth Pavilion.
While it’s not unusual for a 41-year-old to experience some soreness after months of inactivity, Jagr is no usual 41-year-old.
Last year, he played 34 games with Kladno in the Czech league and another 34 with Dallas before getting dealt to Boston. From there, Jagr appeared in 11 regular season contests with the Bruins, then 22 playoff games.
So, 101 games all told.
It was also a year in which his rigorous training practices — late-night workouts, after-hours access to rinks — came to light.
Here’s more on that, from CBC’s Elliotte Friedman:
“The first time I found out (about the late-night routine), I arrived at the rink first thing in the morning…and saw this huge mess of Jagr’s gear soaking wet on the ground. He’s, uh, kind of a messy guy,” [Flyers head equipment manager Derek] Settlemyre said, and you can tell he’s smiling at the memory.
“It wouldn’t be like our guys to leave that. So I asked him if he forgot to get his stuff washed. He said, ‘Oh no buddy, that was last night. I came in around 11.’
“We had a key made for him. He would do double workouts, even after games.”
Here’s another anecdote, from Dallas Magazine:
A few days before the first game, he landed in Dallas and shirked the team’s offers to find him an upscale apartment near downtown Dallas.
Instead, Jagr rented a room at an extended-stay hotel for $169-a-night. He asked management for a key to the rink, and on the team’s nights off, sometimes well after 10 pm, Jagr would go by himself to the ice to skate.
In Dallas, team officials latched onto the Jagr-as-mentor storyline.
He runs drills after games and the young guys join in, hopping from leg to leg outside the locker room, skating extra reps of sprints in between the blue and red lines, or swinging around a small circle weight on the end of their hockey sticks.
This past postseason, pics of Jagr going for a late night skate have popped up (see here), as did some showing him in a weighted vest (see here), a 30-pound flak jacket he wears for strength and conditioning.
Apr 16, 2014, 6:46 PM EDT
Unproven goalie vs. a gold-medal goalie in Game 1.
Apr 16, 2014, 6:30 PM EDT
A battle between a scrappy underdog and a perplexing favorite.
Apr 16, 2014, 6:18 PM EDT
A little less grit against the Anaheim Ducks.
Apr 16, 2014, 5:16 PM EDT
Not Brandon Pirri.
Apr 16, 2014, 4:14 PM EDT
“He gives us the best chance to win, so he’ll be the one starting.”
Apr 16, 2014, 4:00 PM EDT
But both acknowledge they’ve heard the rumblings.
Apr 16, 2014, 3:05 PM EDT
22-26-7 with a .901 save percentage.
Apr 16, 2014, 2:17 PM EDT
Sacco, Forton, Numminen and Corsi are out.
Apr 16, 2014, 2:05 PM EDT
Top seeds don’t have it easy in the first round.
Apr 16, 2014, 1:44 PM EDT
Spent one season with the Oilers, now off to SKA St. Petersburg.
Apr 16, 2014, 12:53 PM EDT
He’ll dress for the series opener against Tampa Bay tonight.
Apr 16, 2014, 12:17 PM EDT
Steve Mason is “out.”
Apr 16, 2014, 12:00 PM EDT
Short answer: Plenty.
Apr 16, 2014, 11:59 AM EDT
Pittsburgh won all five meetings between the teams during the regular season.
Apr 16, 2014, 11:25 AM EDT
Prove us wrong, all 16 teams. Prove…us…wrong.
Apr 16, 2014, 10:59 AM EDT
So, what happens now with Evander Kane?
Apr 16, 2014, 10:39 AM EDT
Click inside to see…
Apr 16, 2014, 9:51 AM EDT
Tampa Bay’s top-six would have been in trouble without them.
Apr 16, 2014, 8:58 AM EDT
His solid regular season will be overshadowed by whatever he does in the playoffs.
Apr 16, 2014, 8:04 AM EDT
Previewing the first round.
- WATCH LIVE: Montreal Canadiens vs. Tampa Bay Lightning (Game 1) 0
- WATCH LIVE: Columbus Blue Jackets vs. Pittsburgh Penguins (Game 1) 1
- Emery to start Game 1 versus Rangers 69
- Bulletin-board material: Why your team won’t win the Stanley Cup 29
- PHT staff picks: Who’s going to win the Stanley Cup? 52
- 2014 Stanley Cup Playoffs: PHT’s Round 1 picks 33
- Pressing Question: Can the Blackhawks avoid the Stanley Cup hangover? 10
- Florida wins ’14 NHL draft lottery, will pick first overall 41
- Philly mum on Mason’s availability for Game 1 vs. Rangers 26
- Pressing question: Can the Blues get back on track? 16
- That’s a raise: Flyers sign MacDonald to six-year, $30 million extension (91)
- Lightning’s Malone arrested for DUI, cocaine possession (73)
- Emery to start Game 1 versus Rangers (69)
- Update: Daniel Sedin in stable condition, hospitalized after scary hit (58)
- PHT staff picks: Who’s going to win the Stanley Cup? (52)