Should Jaromir Jagr's name be engraved on the Stanley Cup with the rest of the 2018 Washington Capitals? His latest Instagram post — sarcastic / facetious or not —suggests he thinks so.
The 47-year-old hockey legend took to social media on Thursday to “celebrate” the 18-year anniversary of his trade from the Pittsburgh Penguins to the Washington Capitals for three prospects.
Entering the 2001-02 campaign there truly wasn’t anyone more dominant in the sport than Jagr. In his 11 years with the Penguins, he collected 1079 points in 806 regular season games (1.34 points per game) and won a couple of Stanley Cups in the early 1990’s. On top of that, he was coming off his fourth straight Art Ross Trophy as the leading point scorer in the regular season.
However, as Jagr so eloquently put it in his Instagram post, things in Washington “didn’t work out...”
In October 2001, he signed what was the richest deal in NHL history at the time: an eight-year, $88 million pact. According to the Associated Press, Jagr’s arrival was supposed to kick-start Washington’s five-year plan to win the Stanley Cup.
Obviously, that’s not what happened, and after two-and-a-half seasons he was traded to the New York Rangers. All the Capitals had to show for Jagr’s tenure was one first-round postseason exit.
In his 190 regular season games with Washington, Jagr amassed 201 points (1.05 points per game). While scoring over a point per game is impressive, this is Jagr we’re talking about here. In his first full season with the Rangers, he netted 54 goals and piled up 123 points in 82 games.
While he failed to meet expectations while in D.C., he hasn’t done so in the turning-a-negative-into-a-positive department all of these years later.
In Jagr’s last season with the Capitals — one in which the squad finished with a record of 23-46-10-3 to sit near the league basement — they won the Draft Lottery and the right to select Alex Ovechkin. It’s a fact that Jagr jokingly took some credit for.
“If I would play very good, you would never had a chance to draft OVI,” he wrote on Instagram. “And you would probably didn’t win the cup last year... You welcome.”
(Yes, there was a smiley-faced emoji or two in that message.)
And while the statement is quite the stretch, all good jokes have at least an ounce of truth behind them.
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