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.
Sep 18, 2014, 12:12 PM EDT
Two key youngsters on a Stars team with high hopes.
Sep 18, 2014, 12:06 PM EDT
Former first-round pick missed extensive time to a torn ACL.
Sep 18, 2014, 11:42 AM EDT
Taken 16th overall in 2007.
Sep 18, 2014, 11:27 AM EDT
Remember him? Taken 3rd overall in 2004… behind Alex Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin.
Sep 18, 2014, 11:10 AM EDT
Tough blow for a kid looking to make the leap this season.
Sep 18, 2014, 11:01 AM EDT
Just a precautionary measure, said GM Jim Rutherford.
Sep 18, 2014, 10:35 AM EDT
He spent a lot of time on the sidelines last season, but Pittsburgh leaned on him heavily when he was healthy.
Sep 18, 2014, 10:00 AM EDT
Retired Finnish star was diplomatic after being made a healthy scratch, but now he’s opening up.
Sep 18, 2014, 9:01 AM EDT
Is it still reasonable to believe this might have a relatively happy ending for both sides?
Sep 18, 2014, 7:57 AM EDT
Thursday’s collection of links.
Sep 17, 2014, 10:48 PM EDT
Brendan Bell also gets a chance to impress.
Sep 17, 2014, 10:00 PM EDT
A clothing-conscious post.
Sep 17, 2014, 8:59 PM EDT
His back issues present another headache for Columbus.
Sep 17, 2014, 7:50 PM EDT
He has 44 games of NHL experience under his belt.
Sep 17, 2014, 6:39 PM EDT
Insert your “humongous big” jokes here.
Sep 17, 2014, 6:24 PM EDT
Quite an open letter.
Sep 17, 2014, 5:26 PM EDT
Sep 17, 2014, 5:01 PM EDT
His agent says it’s best to leave town and avoiding being a distraction.
Sep 17, 2014, 3:09 PM EDT
“No matter how much my old teammates say it doesn’t bother them, it affects them. It does in that city.”
Sep 17, 2014, 2:37 PM EDT
And on the possibility of his client signing an offer sheet? “Well, we’ll have to see.”
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- Jackets reveal Johansen offers — including an eight year, $46M deal 52
- Mike Yeo is pretty unhappy with Minnesota’s goalie situation 22
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- Will the NHL publicize divers? (48)
- No icing on the PK? The USHL will see how that looks (43)