NHL Free Agency: Jaromir Jagr Will Help Bring Dallas Stars Back to Contention

Rob GoldbergFeatured ColumnistJuly 4, 2012

UNIONDALE, NY - MARCH 15:  Jaromir Jagr #68 of the Philadelphia Flyers skates against the New York Islanders at the Nassau Veterans Memorial Coliseum on March 15, 2012 in Uniondale, New York. The Flyers defeated the Islanders 3-2.  (Photo by Bruce Bennett/Getty Images)
Bruce Bennett/Getty Images

Despite being 40 years old, Jaromir Jagr still has the ability to help a hockey team compete in the playoffs. That is exactly what he will do for the Dallas Stars.

ESPN reports that Jagr has signed with the club for $4.55 million over one year.

There is no doubt that the veteran is one of the best players of all time, but it is also important to note that he still has some left in the tank. Last season with the Philadelphia Flyers, the forward finished with 19 goals and 35 assists. That would have ranked fourth on the Stars last season in each category. 

Dallas has some talented players, but the lack of depth held the team out of the playoffs for the fourth straight year. Overall, the team struggled to score, especially during power plays.

To fix these struggles, the Stars signed Ray Whitney and traded for Derek Roy. Each of these players should immediately help the offense with both their scoring and passing abilities. Whitney finished sixth in the NHL last season with 53 assists.

With Jagr, the trio adds instant offense to a team that struggled to find the back of the net all year. In addition, all will provide a veteran presence that has been missing in Dallas. After ending the season with five straight losses, they need leadership. 

Specifically, Jagr can mentor the younger players on the team and help them get the most out of their abilities. Few people in the league know the sport better than the Czech native. Hopefully, the rest of the squad will listen to a person with over 1,600 career points.

It is unlikely Jagr will be able to top 100 points ever again, but there is no question Dallas has a better team now than before the acquisition. With added depth to the first two lines, reaching the playoffs should no longer be a problem.

As the team progresses, the only thing left to do will be to win a Stanley Cup.