Jaromir Jagr forced into action at age 50 after illness decimates team he owns
Jaromir Jagr hasn’t played in the National Hockey League since 2017, but the 50-year-old remains undefeated against father time.
The soon-to-be 51-year-old, owner of the Kladno Knights in the Czech Extraliga, had to fill in due to a widespread illness decimating the roster, making his 2022-23 season debut on Sunday. And he looked pretty good, especially for a player of his age.
Jagr suited up in the Knights’ contest against HC Bílí Tygři Liberec, tallying a pair of assists in over 15 minutes of ice time. His points came in a losing effort, as Kladno fell 7-3.
Jaromir Jagr, the ageless wonder 🤯
The Kladno Knights of the Czech Extraliga had an illness run through the team. Jagr, the team’s owner, jumped into the lineup and picked up two assists ... at 50 years old 👏
h/t: @chrismpeters pic.twitter.com/INtK2HAHhK
— Hockey Night in Canada (@hockeynight) December 11, 2022
Here's a look at Jaromir Jagr's (@68Jagr) 2 primary assists today in his return for Kladno. 🐐🍎🍎
Kladno fall 7-3
2 SOG | 2 Assists | 15:10 TOI pic.twitter.com/Mr34LWSLCJ
— Hockey News Hub (@HockeyNewsHub) December 11, 2022
Friday’s contest between Kladno and Pardubice was postponed after the Knights couldn’t dress enough skaters due to the illness. But as the club faced a second straight postponement, Jagr opted to avoid that disastrous outcome, playing his first game since April.
The 6-foot-3 forward further explained the situation to local reporters post-game, revealing the Knights were down to only 12 skaters the day before and could’ve faced discipline from the league if another game was postponed, forcing him to draw in from the owner’s box.
“My arrival was not planned in advance,” Jagr said. “When Liberec decided to not postpone the match, we only had 12 players at training on Saturday. There was a threat of suspension and I didn’t want it to happen.”
Jagr may have helped the Knights avoid suspension, though his return to professional hockey will delay his induction into the Hockey Hall of Fame until at least 2026.
50-year-old Jaromír Jágr is making his season debut as he returns to @RytiriKladno lineup for Czech Extraliga game for the first time since April.
This means his induction into the @HockeyHallFame will be postponed at least until 2026.
— Jiří Vítek (@JVitek94) December 11, 2022
Jagr, a back-to-back Stanley Cup champion in 1991 and '92, has repeatedly dressed for his own franchise in previous seasons, playing at least one game each year since leaving the Calgary Flames in 2018. He purchased a majority share of Kladno a few days after having his NHL contract terminated by Calgary.
The eight-time All-Star notched 766 goals and 1,921 points in 1,733 contests across three separate NHL stints with the Pittsburgh Penguins, New York Rangers, Washington Capitals, Florida Panthers, New Jersey Devils, Philadelphia Flyers, Boston Bruins, Dallas Stars and Flames.
Jagr has scored 26 goals and 70 points over 110 career games with Kladno since 2017-18.
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