From youtube, some of Jagr’s best goals and setups from the 2015-16 season:
Getting to play professional sports is a challenge for a person of any age. A long career takes skill, dedication, opportunity and luck. The splendid playing career of Jaromir Jagr started in 1990 when he was an 18-year-old rookie with the Pittsburgh Penguins. It’s 2016. At age 44 Jagr begins his second full season with the Florida Panthers.
Injuries chase some players away, the inability to adapt or keep up means the end of the line for other players. Look at some events of last season and this summer:
Pascaul Dupuis bravely came back from blood clots and played a few months with the Penguins before the clots returned forced him to end his career. Close to South Florida the career of Miami Heat star Chris Bosh of the NBA has been placed on hold for the same malady as Dupuis. For those unaware, clots are difficult if not impossible to remove and many medications used to prevent them spreading in a patient’s body make them a bleeding risk, both externally and internally.
If not due to injuries, some players don’t get a chance to continue their career due to a lack of interest from NHL teams.
Fortunately for hockey fans, Jagr has avoided career-threatening or career-ending injuries and continues the training and refining his game so he can remain an eunduring force in the NHL.Since his return from the KHL in 2011-12, Jagr has played 356 of 376 of his teams games, or 94.7%, while playing top line minutes. The five-time scroring champ will attempt to lead an NHL team in scoring for the third time in the last four seasons. Jagr finished strong last season recording 32 points in the Panthers final 32 games.
The Czech right wing was limited to two assists in the playoffs as Florida was ousted in the first round by the New York Islanders. His line normally includes Finn Aleksander Barkov and Canadian Jonathon Huberdeau. The dynamic trio was stifled despite recording 82 shots for three goals in the six games. This after a regular season that saw them collect 75 goals on 498 shots (15% scoring percentage).
The challenge for Jagr and Barkov will be finding a left wing that can put up some numbers while Huberdeau goes through a four-month recovery for a skate-related injury suffered in a recent exhibition game against their opening night opponent, the New Jersey Devils.. Another Jonathon–Marchessault, is expected to start on the left flank for the Panthers on opening night. Barkov and Jagr were productive in the opening months of the 2015-16 season while Huberdeau struggled.
With a revamped defense, and the loss of Huberdeau and also third-line center Nik Bjudgstad for the start of the season, the Panthers will be challenged early this season as they try to recapture the first place finish of 2015-16.
In the meantime, milestones will be there for Jagr to chase and also more mullet to grow, as shown in our Jagr-O-Meter photo, courtesy of George Richards, the Florida Panthers beat writer for the Miami Herald.
Like 15 other NHL playoff teams, the season ended early for Jagr and the Florida Panthers. Jagr spent most of the off-season at home in the Czech Republic looking after his father. But there were some good moments–he signed another one-year contract with the Panthers. At the NHL Awards banquet in June Jagr was awarded the Masterson Trophy, awarded to the player who displays sportsmanship. perseverance and dedication to hockey. This on top of a season where Jagr became the NHL’s third all-time leading goal scorer and point producer and was voted in as Captain of the Atlantic Division All-Star team. His 66-points were good enough for a seventh place finish as the NHL’s MVP.
Benchmarks won’t wait long this season as Jagr starts the season with 749 goals. With his 24th game played this season he will become fourth all time in games played with 1,653 to pass Mark Reechi. A collection of possible milestones for Jagr is presented on today’s Jagr-O-Meter, shown above.
FLASHBACK TIME: One of the better interviews with Jagr was presented by ESPN during the NHL weekeknd:
The Panthers and Jagr host one of #68’s former teams, the New Jersey Devils, to open the 2016-17 campaign tonight at BB&T Center. While other sites clog the internet with projections, we present some interesting data compiled by Jagr last season.
Welcome back Jagr fans and remember….
Editor’s Note: It was a tough summer for your Jagr-O-Meter.com editor as headaches and eventually severe internal bleeding resulted in two days of intensive care as part of a 10-day hospital stay which included surgery. These events hindered my ability to produce the news. The recovery continues for several months but we expect to produce updated Jagr-O-Meter’s after each game as well as links to other articles and videos Jagr fans should enjoy. Your photos from warmup, game and public sightings are welcome as well as other content you care to share.
Tickets to all Panthers games can be secured through panthers.nhl.com, where you can also get the latest team news and merchandise featuring the Panthers new logo. Never hurts to have a future hall of famer sporting the new duds!