Fans for years have recognized Jaromir Jagr for his flair on the ice. But confused fans have no idea what to make of his recent off-ice theatrics.
Jagr’s most recent Facebook video raises a few questions. After donning a pair of black shades and looking like he just rolled out of bed, he stated, "As for my next job here in the NHL, I have to say that I see a lot of black."
What does this mean? Jagr is speaking in his native language in ominous garb. It is uncharacteristic of Jagr, and fans eagerly await his next announcement. In the meantime, should they take this cryptic message literally or metaphorically?
While Jagr is a wizard with the puck, it is unknown whether or not he can craft Shakespearean prose with ease. The first option taken literally could mean that Jagr will join a team that styles and profiles with a black sweater.
Update: A Czech-to-English summary of Jaromir Jagr's Corey Hart-esue Facebook announcement. http://t.co/e7CGLWwLUG— Hockey Central (@SNHockeyCentral) July 16, 2013
This could include the Los Angeles Kings, the Pittsburgh Penguins, the Anaheim Ducks and the Carolina Hurricanes. There were rumors that Jagr and the Hurricanes had mutual interest, per NHL.com; so that is a distinct possibility.
The Kings would also be an interesting fit, as they have the roster space to add a winger of Jagr's caliber. He can still be an effective player, and he would be a fit in a system that focuses more on creativity. The Bruins, also a team that sports black, play a physical game that can be taxing.
Jagr isn't a spring chicken, and that style of play can wear on a soon-to-be 42-year-old future Hall of Fame winger. The Ducks are another team that would be a potential landing spot, but they are still waiting to find out if their resident veteran, Teemu Selanne, wants to come back for another season.
Or could the message be taken in a negative context? As Puck Daddy's Greg Wyshynski suggests, black could well be interpreted as bleak.
On a side not, his future could be black and bleak, and that would apply if he were joining the New Jersey Devils, a team that will undergo a massive rebuild.
Jagr's agent, Petr Svoboda, also is a very open person, and he has been vocal while advocating for his client. For that reason, it appears that Jagr’s message is not about a black future in terms of his hockey career.
It has been well-known that Jagr wants to finish his hockey career at home in the Czech Extraliga, and that wouldn’t be a bleak future. He said in an interview that he wants to score a goal in the Czech league at age 50, so if anything, Jagr would be fulfilling his dream. If Jagr left for the CZE, he would be ending his NHL career on his terms.
He is coming off a very successful Stanley Cup playoff run in which he was an asset for the Bruins. He may not have scored a goal, but he was a master playmaker who illustrated that he still has amazing hands.
At his age, he can still be a contributor as long as his minutes are sheltered. Jagr is no longer a fluid and speedy skater, but he still has things he can offer a team. Jagr can still run a power play, he has a great work ethic and he is a great veteran leader who can mentor rookies.
Therefore, it is fair to say that Jagr’s future is black, but it is just unknown what other color will become a staple of his on-ice wardrobe.