NHL Rumor: Jagr and Cervenka Alberta Bound?

Steve McSweenSenior Analyst IFebruary 23, 2010

Men's hockey at the Vancouver Olympics hasn't been just about Canada winning a gold, there have been some underlying stories developing as well.

For instance, in the case of Jaromir Jagr and Roman Cervenka of the Czech Republic, it has been somewhat of a stepping out party.

The 38-year-old Jagr is in the final year of his contract with Avangard Omsk of the KHL, and has made it clear he would love the opportunity to come back to the NHL.

Last season after the Edmonton Oilers made an attempt to sign him, Jagr told Alan Adams of CBC Sports he appreciated the efforts the Oilers made prior to the NHL trade deadline to sign him for a playoff push, and he respected the club for showing interest.

Jagr was quoted as saying, "I was excited when I heard that Edmonton pushed pretty hard to get me and I really appreciate it. And if I ever go there (the NHL), they would be my No. 1 pick because they showed interest in me first."

So far, he has shown flashes of his former self during the 2010 Winter Games, and looked like he still has something to offer an NHL club.

Whether he can once again coexist with Tom Renney, who coached him with the New York Rangers, is another question.

If he does indeed return to the NHL with the Oilers, in all likelihood he will be bringing his comrad Roman Cervenka along as well.

Jagr has made his admiration clear for the 24-year-old Czech center, who is regarded by many as one of the best players outside the NHL.

Cervenka leads the Czech Elite League in scoring this season, with 30 goals and 41 assists in 48 games so far; he would have to sign an entry-level contract which would make him even more appealing for an NHL club.

Especially a small-market team like Edmonton.

Bringing in two players with the abilities of Cervenka and Jagr may be exactly what this Oilers club needs in order to give them some much-needed offense up front.

And if Edmonton ends up finishing last, which is as likely as Matthew McConaughey taking his shirt off in his next movie, then they will add the consensus No. 1 pick Taylor Hall into the mix as well.

With a healthy Ales Hemsky to go along with Dustin Penner, Sam Gagner, and possibly the crafty young Jordan Eberle—who is shiftier than a dancing politician—there could be a lot to cheer about in Northern Alberta next season.

Which would be a nice change of pace for a team that keeps getting the short end of the stick time and time again. See Heatley, Dany and Pronger, Chris. 

If any NHL team could use a change of fate, it is definitely the Oilers, who were once a dominant franchise. Something they haven't been since Paula Abdul was still making records.

As a Calgary Flames fan, I may just regret saying that one day.