The leading scorer for the New Jersey Devils is a free agent this summer, and his agent believes he could return to the team next season.
This might read as the most obvious, pedestrian free agent tale in the history of freedom or agents, but when that player is Jaromir Jagr and he’ll be 43 next season, it’s a bit more intriguing.
Agent Petr Svoboda – best friend of The Pensblog – tells NJ.com that there’s a “really great chance” Jagr is going to be a New Jersey Devil next season on another one-year deal:
Svoboda knows for sure that Jagr has greatly enjoyed his first season in New Jersey and says he's pretty sure that Devils GM Lou Lamoriello wants the team's 42-year-old leading scorer back. “Basically, Jags is very, very happy where he's at, and I think it's vice versa,” Svoboda said. “I don't see why he should not be going back to New Jersey next year.”
Jagr made $2 million base salary and saw that increase to $4 million after playing a minimum of 40 games. He’s their leader in points (57) by a significant margin after being brought on as a hasty replacement for the “retired” Ilya Kovalchuk.
Like his other stops since returning from the KHL, Jagr has been a great locker room presence whose work ethic has proved inspiring. His contributions offensively on the ice have been exemplarily in New Jersey. To say he fits Pete DeBoer’s system would be an understatement.
He’d be an asset on other teams; what if someone antes up more than what the Devils are willing to spend on Jagr?
“I'll put it to you this way: We've never gone to the highest bidder the last three years,” Svoboda told Randy Miller of NJ.com.
OK, so can he tell us who offered Jagr more than $4.55 million in tax-friendly Texas back in 2012?