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DeBoer: Devils ‘overplaying’ Jagr

Dec 4, 2013, 1:39 PM EDT

JaromirJagr Getty Images

By all accounts, 41-year-old Jaromir Jagr is having a great season — he’s leading the Devils in scoring with 22 points through 28 games.

But his head coach thinks it might be too much.

“I didn’t expect he’d be able to take the kind of workload we’ve given him so far,” Peter DeBoer said, as per NorthJersey.com. “Frankly, in my mind we’re playing him too much. We’re overplaying him.”

Jagr is averaging 18:43 per game this season, his highest total since returning to the NHL in 2011-12. As DeBoer mentioned, the Devils have been forced to rely on Jagr due to a number of injuries at forward — Patrik Elias and Ryane Clowe have both missed extensive time — and the fact that Jagr has been his most consistent scorer throughout the season.

After a relatively slow start — just three points in his first seven games — Jagr has caught fire, notching 19 points in his last 21. This includes a notable uptick in goals (six in his last eight, 11 all told), something that’s put him on pace to score 30-plus this year… meaning he could register his first 30-goal season since doing it with the Rangers in 2006-07.

Despite Jagr’s great play, DeBoer insists he needs to cut the veteran’s minutes.

“I look at the fact that this is an Olympic year, [Jagr's] probably a guy that’s going to go to the Olympics, we’re in a condensed schedule,” he explained. “The minutes have just been a little bit high, that’s all.

“He’s earned them and he’s been key in getting some of the of wins in some of those games, but for me the bigger issues is I shouldn’t have to play him that much.”

  1. peterjohnjoseph - Dec 4, 2013 at 1:58 PM

    He’ s said this is his last year. The Devils chances of getting to the playoffs, never mind going very far are slim. Why not go all out while he still can? The man is a machine. After playing those 19 minutes, he throws a weighted vest on and trains for another hour or two after the game. He trains unlike anyone, before and after.

    I honestly believe he can take it, and more so, believe he wants it- especially it being his final year in the game. Give him all the time you can; its not only going to give him more chances to get points in his final year, but it also gives your team a chance to get more points in his final year, since no one else is holding up his end.

    • stakex - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:05 PM

      Actually, he hasn’t said this is his last year at all. He said its possible, but also suggested he might well play for another season or even more…

      http://prohockeytalk.nbcsports.com/2013/09/11/brodeur-jagr-wont-commit-to-this-being-final-season/

      It also sounds like Jagr will be playing professional hockey for years to come. Be it in the NHL or somewhere else.

      • peterjohnjoseph - Dec 4, 2013 at 5:19 PM

        Wow, and to think I’m basing this Jagr’s last year idea off of what someone said in another post a few days ago. I just assumed it to be true. No one said he was wrong, so I figured I must of slept through the news that day. He seemed so convincing with his good grammar. I mean, I never believe what I hear in these forums until I check the facts.. (thats a complete lie.. at least once a week I refuse to check facts and end up having to correct myself.)

        I’m still standing by my initial thought. Workhouse. Ride em’ till’ the sunset.

  2. darksidecowboy - Dec 4, 2013 at 2:17 PM

    Jagr stays in incredible shape to handle the minutes. In fact, I think he’s going to consider one more year, pulling the Favre.

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