Czech ice hockey star Jaromír Jágr has lost the opportunity this year to
set a new NHL record for the number of games played.
Jágr hopes of equalling the record of Gordie Howe for the number of games played evaporated on Wednesday when he failed to play for the Calgary Flames against Los Angeles.
Forty-five year old Jágr so far has a tally of 1733 games, 34 short of Canadian Howe’s total of 1767. Calgary has 34 games left to play this season but the Czech, who has been sidelined by injury recently, looks doubtful to feature in all of them.
The Calgary Flames have said they are waiting now for legendary Czech
player Jaromír Jágr to recover from injury before deciding on what to do
with the future hall of famer.
There was speculation recently that Jágr’s agent and the team management were negotiating an exit for the player who has missed the last six matches and 22 overall so far this season. The two previous seasons, with Florida, the forward missed only three games.
At the moment, the team’s general manager Brad Treliving said it was not possible to say more. Calgary are currently eighth in the Western Conference and third in the Pacific Division. It is possible the team may stick with the experienced player if a playoff spot appears likely.
Speculation is growing over the future of star forward Jaromír Jágr with
the Calgary Flames in the NHL following a report on Saturday by
Sportsnet's Eliotte Friedman that the Flames management had given
Jágr's agent Peter Svoboda permission to find an apparent
"exit" for the player from the franchise.
The story was also reported by The Hockey News on Monday.
Jágr, a future Hall of Famer and second-most productive player in the history of the NHL (second only to Wayne Gretzky), has suffered from a groin and knee injury and only picked up seven points so far this season. It is unclear whether Jágr, 45, at this point would be able to secure another contract in the NHL although there is reportedly European interest and the player could return to play one last time for the Czech national squad at the upcoming Winter Olympics. Or return to play for his hometown team HC Kladno, a club he owns.
The legendary forward, who has two Stanley Cup rings, won Olympic gold with the Czech team at Nagano in 1998, where the Czechs defeated the US, Canada and Russia in the knock-out stages.
In other NHL action, Tampa Bay Lightning forward Ondřej Palát forced what
NHL.com called the save of the year from Montreal Canadiens' goalie
Carey Price although 2018 is only a few days old.
Jumping on a rebound from Price, Palát shot at what appeared to be an open net. Somehow, the Montreal goaltender managed a “roll over save” and to get his skate in front of the puck.
The clutch back-to-back saves, which came in overtime, allowed the Habs to win the game in a shootout, snapping a five-game losing streak.
Czech hockey forward Jaromír Jágr was not on the roster for Thursday
night’s game between the Calgary Flames and the L.A. Kings. The
45-year-old star veteran, who has been dogged by a groin injury this
season, was not listed as injured but did not take part in the skate and
Flames’ coach Glen Gulutzan said more information would be made available on Friday. He told the press that, looking at Jágr’s career, it had not happened often that the player had had to miss games.
No. 68 recently played in his 1,731st NHL match, tying Ron Francis in third sport for most NHL matches. Gordie Howe has the record for most played, followed by Mark Messier.
In hockey, the Czech junior team lost in the semi-finals of the world
championships to Canada.
The Czechs went down 2:7. They will play again on Friday for the third place position against the United States, which is hosting the championships.
The Czechs will be seeking their first medal in the championships since the bronze achieved in the 2005 competition. Canada faces Sweden in the final on Saturday.