Arthur Staple, who preceded Steve Zipay on the Rangers beat at Newsday, has a worthwhile take on the Jaromir Jagr situation, saying in the end, “No. 68 will simply go where the money is.”:http://www.newsday.com/sports/hockey/rangers/ny-spstaple0508,0,5775507.column
I’m not naive enough to think that’s not a huge consideration. But I’ll take it a step further. For one, if it really is just about money, Jagr will indeed go back to Omsk, where he can be paid handsomely, play a shorter season, and not have to worry about fitting under anyone’s salary cap.
More likely, Jagr’s decision will be dictated less by money and more by worth. It’s a small distinction, but an important one.
Like I said, I’m sure Jagr wants to get paid as much as he can. But let’s just take the Rangers for the second. I think more important to him is that the money Glen Sather offers him makes him feel like he’ s still the focal point of the team. And that’s tricky seeing how there are already three players who are making in the neighborhood of $7 million per (Henrik Lundqvist checks in a little shy of that while Scott Gomez and Chris Drury both make a little bit more). For Jagr to make that sort of money, too, the team would either have to extremely creative with bonus clauses, or cut corners elsewhere (or both).
Maybe the player would settle for less in a concession to his age. But there’s always the chance that ego gets in the way — as if often does in these situations –Â and he decides to see what he can fetch somewhere else.