Darren Dreger from TSN has reported earlier today that Jagr will test the waters in free agency. This does not completely rule out a return to the Flyers, but it does make it seem highly unlikely. I think the combination of the Flyers forward depth and the need for a defensive replacement for Pronger are the factors that went into this decision. It was most likely a mutual call between Jagr and the Flyers. The Flyers no doubt would be willing to bring him back in, but at a reduced price nowhere near his $3.3 million he made last season. Jagr obviously believes some team will go around that number for him. And he is right. Somebody will be willing to pay that much for the future Hall of Famers’ services. He totaled 54 points in 73 games last season, but he really struggled at the end of the season into the playoffs.
Jagr’s talent is secondary to his leadership ability at this point in his career. I believe he was instrumental to Giroux’s progression this year, but his leadership alone is not deserving of $3.3 million a year. In my opinion I believe the Flyers said pass and Jagr said he would take a look at his options then, but if free agency leaves Jagr feeling unfulfilled he will be back. Then again this could all be part of negotiations so stay tuned.
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