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Even more Jagr Red Wings-Penguins news: NHL return certain, can’t sign till July 1

Updated 2x at 5:06 PM: Oh fun, per RedWingsFeed and MLive’s Ansar Khan:

The agent for Jaromir Jagr said on Thursday that the forward is “99 percent’’ sure to return to the NHL rather than sign with a Russian team but that he can’t sign a contract until July 1, the start of free agency. Petr Svobda said Jagr still hasn’t decided which NHL club to join after playing in Russia the past three seasons. The Detroit Red Wings and Pittsburgh Penguins are the only teams with confirmed interest. Another team or two might be in the mix.

“It is going to be the NHL,’’ Svobda said. “Something (unexpected) would have to happen for him to go back to Russia. I’d say it’s 99 percent certain he’ll play in the NHL. He’s got teams he’d rather go to because he’s got a very good chance of winning. Detroit is one possibility. He likes their team concept.’‘

As noted in the mid-day post, the Penguins’ press believes that there’s a sense that Jagr’s waiting for Mario Lemieux to step in and convince Ray Shero to sign Jagr, but, depending on who you believe, the Penguins are either going to match the Wings’ reported $2.5 million offer or they’re going to ask Jagr to take less—and TSN’s Bob McKenzie has revealed that the “mystery team” is Montreal. Jagr’s a pal of Tomas Plekanec’s and he’s always been intrigued by playing in La Belle Province, but the bottom line is that Jagr’s making the Wings wait to see what the Penguins can offer him and whether they’re really interested in bringing him back.

Update: Per ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun:

Jaromir Jagr spoke with Pittsburgh Penguins owner and former teammate Mario Lemieux on Wednesday but continues to mull whether to return to the NHL or stay in Russia.The Penguins and Detroit Red Wings remain the front-runners, although Jagr’s agent Peter Svoboda says other NHL teams are calling.

“I think he’s going to be in the NHL, that’s what I think,” Svoboda told ESPN.com Thursday.

Svoboda said he’s been made aware that Jagr can’t sign with an NHL club until July 1. He didn’t say which NHL team his client might play for.

“He really wants to make a great decision, not based on money,” said Svoboda. “He really wants to prove what kind of player he is. He’s taking this seriously. He’s been working out like a dog.”

Via RedWingsFeed, from the Detroit News’s Ted Kulfan:

The agent for Jaromir Jagr insists Jagr will play in the NHL this season, but says a decision on where Jagr will play won’t come before July 1. Petr Svoboda, Jagr’s agent, said Jagr isn’t using the NHL for leverage for a better deal in the Russian Kontinental Hockey League, where Jagr has played the last three seasons.

“He’s a guy that loves hockey like no one else,” said Svoboda from the Czech Republic. “He’s trying to make the best decision for everyone involved. His goal is to come back to the NHL. He’s 39 but he has a lot of hockey left and his conditioning is impeccable. He’s up for the challenge.”

The NHL free-agent signing period begins July 1. Svoboda said he’s been in contact with Wings general manager Ken Holland the last couple of days. Pittsburgh and a third team, believed to be Montreal, according to several reports out of Canada, are also interested in Jagr.

“It’s about where the best fit for him is,” Svoboda said.

Svoboda will travel to Minnesota for the NHL draft, which is Friday and Saturday. Jagr earned close to $6 million for Avangard Omsk in Russia last season.

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Comments

SnLO's avatar

IMO $2.5 mil is about $1.3 mil too much for this guy at this juncture of his career.

I’m not sure what I’ve missed, but I wonder what’s with this Montreal being the mystery team when they’ve publically quashed that notion a couple weeks ago; unless, it was intended to be a negotiation ploy of some sort.

I went from wondering what the big deal was because he couldn’t sign anywhere until July 1st to being corrected that he could sign anytime due his status to reading his agent saying he cannot sign until July 1st. I tried reading the CBA to confirm any of it, but, alas, I couldn’t discern a clear answer. I suppose in the scheme of things it’s really small potatoes, but which date is correct?

Any new news regarding Babcocks coaching staff vacancies?

Posted by SnLO from the sub great-white north on 06/23/11 at 06:13 PM ET

Avatar

I wonder what’s with this Montreal being the mystery team when they’ve publically quashed that notion a couple weeks ago

Are you sure they have?  From what I can recall, they’ve always been on the the teams reported to be interested in him.

And please -PLEASE- Penguins, match or exceed Detroit’s offer.

PLEASE!

Posted by Garth on 06/23/11 at 06:21 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

And please -PLEASE- Penguins, match or exceed Detroit’s offer.

PLEASE!

+19

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 06/23/11 at 06:24 PM ET

Avatar

he cannot sign until July 1st.

I think it’s because he played in the KHL.  I’m not sure if he can’t sign at all or if, because of playing in the KHL, he would have to go through waivers if he signed before July 1st…

Posted by Garth on 06/23/11 at 06:25 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Yeah, Nabby played in the KHL and had to clear waivers. I imagine they have to wait for the official end of the season to sign him.

And I remember hearing Montreal publicly state they weren’t interested as well, I remember the article here on KK.. flip flopping frenchies

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/23/11 at 06:37 PM ET

Avatar

And please -PLEASE- Penguins, match or exceed Detroit’s offer.

Correction: PLEASE EXCEED DETROIT’S OFFER!!!!!!

Posted by Meg on 06/23/11 at 06:47 PM ET

cs6687's avatar

The story in the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review today (not from Rossi, so it’s probably true), is that Shero does not want to pay much more than $1 million for Jagr. That could change, though.

Posted by cs6687 on 06/23/11 at 06:48 PM ET

cs6687's avatar

Detroit will offer him more. It’s just a matter of which is more important to Jagr. More money, or less money to return to Pittsburgh.

Posted by cs6687 on 06/23/11 at 06:50 PM ET

George Malik's avatar

It’s been in the Czech press since the outset, and was mentioned again this past weekend when Jagr won the Golden Stick Award—Jagr wouldn’t have any problem playing with his buddy Tomas Plekanec.

Whatever the Wings have offered Jagr, it’s flat, the offer’s done and Jagr can take it or leave it. Kovacevic’s chat from earlier today suggested that Jagr wants Mario to pull rank and get Shero to sign him (clicky on linky in middle of posty).

Posted by George Malik from South Lyon, MI on 06/23/11 at 06:54 PM ET

SnLO's avatar

And I remember hearing Montreal publicly state they weren’t interested as well, I remember the article here on KK.. flip flopping frenchies
Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/23/11 at 04:37 PM ET

Thanks. I was starting to think I was losing my mind. I flipped through like 20 pages trying to find the post that mentioned Montreal’s non-interest to no avail. I came back to this page to admit to my delusions only to find at least one other person remembers the same statement.

I did find this post from 21 Jun in the TMR:

Montreal Canadiens GM Pierre Gauthier declined comment via email to ESPN.com Tuesday when asked about his team’s rumored interest in Jagr.

and this on 20 Jun, also in the TMR:

It appears that Montreal’s dropping out of the mix

but I couldn’t find the proverbial “silver bullet.”


Oh well, it’s not really that big of a deal…

Posted by SnLO from the sub great-white north on 06/23/11 at 06:54 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

Kovacevic’s chat from earlier today suggested that Jagr wants Mario to pull rank and get Shero to sign him (clicky on linky in middle of posty).

And that’s why he should not play for the Wings.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 06/23/11 at 07:05 PM ET

MsRedWinger's avatar

Yes, please Pens, take him.  I’ve had a bad gut feeling about this whole thing since I first read about it.

Posted by MsRedWinger from Flori-duh on 06/23/11 at 07:30 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Nailed that one Mr. Fluffy.. just told my buddie, Jagr is ALREADY becoming a distraction in the Pens orginization.

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/23/11 at 07:44 PM ET

Flashtastick56's avatar

And please -PLEASE- Penguins, match or exceed Detroit’s offer.

PLEASE!

+19

Posted by mrfluffy from Long Beach on 06/23/11 at 04:24 PM ET

Actually, +68.

Posted by Flashtastick56 from Meriden, CT on 06/23/11 at 08:03 PM ET

cs6687's avatar

Jagr is ALREADY becoming a distraction in the Pens organization.

Nothing could be further from the truth.

Posted by cs6687 on 06/23/11 at 08:20 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

Keep dreaming cs

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/23/11 at 09:15 PM ET

cs6687's avatar

Dude, I follow this team daily. There is no distraction. Just discussions. I didn’t know discussions = distraction.

Posted by cs6687 on 06/23/11 at 09:20 PM ET

cs6687's avatar

But good for the Red Wings to overcome that Lidstrom distraction on Monday.

Posted by cs6687 on 06/23/11 at 09:26 PM ET

mrfluffy's avatar

I couldn’t care less if Jagr is all buddy-buddy with Mario, the Pens, or whatnot. What bothers me is his manipulative behavior. He hasn’t changed, never will, and I don’t want that shat in the Wings’ locker room.

Posted by mrfluffy from A wide spot on I-90 in Montana on 06/23/11 at 09:52 PM ET

Avatar

yeah it does suck to have that 7 time norris trophy winner in your locker room. I mean the man actually thinks hes the best defenseman in the league, the nerve.

such a distraction that he keeps on winning. how have the wings done it in spite of all that ass pain?

Posted by joe on 06/23/11 at 10:53 PM ET

HockeytownOverhaul's avatar

You have a player playing 2 teams against eachother and on one of them using the owner to Vince the gm to sign a player he’s evidentially not interested in and he’s the one in charge of icing a winning team.. shouldn’t piss shore off in the slightest

Posted by HockeytownOverhaul on 06/23/11 at 11:40 PM ET

redxblack's avatar

I was never a fan of the wondermullet.

I wasn’t sold on the wings signing Brad May, but they did. I thought snagging Choppers was probably a bad move, too. Then again, I thought Raffi was overpaid by his contract, but he turned out to be quite an asset those first couple years. I’m no Ken Holland. I still would rather see the wondermullet anywhere but here.

Posted by redxblack from Akron Ohio on 06/24/11 at 02:14 AM ET

RorSchach's avatar

Everyone freaking out about Jagr. But if you had a chance to get him and dump Hudler, would you do it?

Posted by RorSchach from Datsberg on 06/24/11 at 06:01 AM ET

Trish's avatar

yeah it does suck to have that 7 time norris trophy winner in your locker room. I mean the man actually thinks hes the best defenseman in the league, the nerve.

such a distraction that he keeps on winning. how have the wings done it in spite of all that ass pain?

Posted by joe on 06/23/11 at 08:53 PM ET

Hey, Hi Joe.  Welcome(!)

Posted by Trish from PalmBeachCntyFL on 06/24/11 at 01:27 PM ET

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The Malik Report is a destination for all things Red Wings-related. I offer biased, perhaps unprofessional-at-times and verbose coverage of my favorite team, their prospects and developmental affiliates. I've joined the Kukla's Korner family with five years of blogging under my belt, and I hope you'll find almost everything you need to follow your Red Wings at a place where all opinions are created equal and we're all friends, talking about hockey and the team we love to follow.