Tuesday, December 10, 2013
The Associated Press
BOSTON — The Boston Bruins acquired Jaromir Jagr from the Dallas Stars on Tuesday, hoping the 10th-leading goal scorer in NHL history can improve their shaky offense even at age 41.
In this Jan. 24, 2013 file photo, Dallas Stars' Jaromir Jagr (68), of Czech Republic, skates on the ice during warm ups before an NHL hockey game against the Chicago Blackhawks in Dallas. The Boston Bruins have added a big piece to their playoff run, acquiring forward Jagr from the Stars. The Stars confirmed the move on their website. Dallas will get two prospects and a second-round pick in return. (AP Photo/Tony Gutierrez)
His peak years far behind him, Jagr still should boost the Bruins weak power play as they gear up for the playoffs after missing out on their first choice to improve their attack.
The deal for two prospects and a draft pick came six days after the Bruins thought they obtained forward Jarome Iginla from the Calgary Flames, only to learn Iginla had been traded to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
"As you progress in years, obviously your skill set and other things ... lessen," Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said, "but (Jagr's) game is still the strong power game and he's leading the (Stars) in scoring and you watch him play and you see a lot of what you used to see in him.
"I'm confident that Jaromir will accept whatever role he's given."
With wings Milan Lucic and Nathan Horton underachieving on offense this season, one of them could be dropped to the third line to make room for Jagr.
"Obviously, there's a need on the third line, but he's got a higher-line pedigree," Chiarelli said. "What I said to Jaromir was that we pride ourselves on four strong lines and he's an important part but not the (main) part to the success. So he can be on the third line."
Jagr was traded for forwards Lane MacDermid and Cody Payne, and a conditional second-round pick in this year's draft that becomes a first-rounder if the Bruins reach the Eastern Conference finals.
"In this process, through this player and the other player (Iginla), this whole trade period, teams have been asking for a lot of our different prospects," Chiarelli said. "If (there's) anything I can take away from this, it's that our prospects have some good value."
In his first season with the Stars, Jagr has 14 goals and 26 points.
Entering Tuesday night's game against the Ottawa Senators, Brad Marchand led the Bruins with 14 goals and Patrice Bergeron was first with 31 points. Jagr, who is expected to join the Bruins on Wednesday, has 679 career goals.
Jagr also has six power-play goals, twice as many as Bruins leaders Marchand and Tyler Seguin, and should help the team with the 24th-ranked power play in the NHL going into Tuesday's game.
With the trade deadline coming Wednesday and the Stars in 12th place in the Western Conference, they decided to trade a player who could become a free agent after the season.
"Jaromir Jagr produced as a consistent scorer for our team all year and we would like to thank him for his contributions to our hockey club," Dallas Stars general manager Joe Nieuwendyk said. "With our eye to the future, we have acquired some valuable assets that we believe strengthen our organization."
Jagr has won five scoring titles, 1998-99 league MVP honors and Stanley Cups in his first two NHL seasons, with the Penguins in 1990-91 and 1991-92, after they took him with the fifth pick in the 1990 draft.
But his strength and scoring ability could spark a Bruins team that was in fourth place in the East but ranked just seventh in the conference in goals — with only 17 in their past eight games — at the time of the trade.
(Continued on page 2)