Winnipeg Free Press - PRINT EDITION
Posted: 07/7/2013 1:00 AM | Comments: 0
Jaromir Jagr wants to extend his NHL career, and his agent said some teams are "very interested" in his 41-year-old client.
Jagr might have to wait a while, but the league's active scoring leader is hardly the only free agent still looking for a new job this weekend.
"He definitely still wants to play and there is some interest in him," Jagr's agent, Petr Svoboda, told The Associated Press on Saturday. "I think it's going to take some time, but you never know for sure because there are three teams that are very interested."
Svoboda declined to say which teams wanted to sign Jagr.
J.P. Barry, who represents two of the top free agents, Daniel Cleary and Mason Raymond, also expected a relatively slower pace of moves.
"We've touched based with several teams, and many of them are being patient at this point," Barry said Saturday. "We've got options for (Cleary and Raymond), but we're in a holding pattern with each of them because I think everyone is taking a breath this weekend.
"I've been through about 15 of these, and there is always a frenzy of moves, then a pause to reassess and then a second wave. It's tough to predict when that second wave will happen, so we're always on call when teams are ready."
Day 1 of the free agency flurry on Friday included dozens of deals, including Jarome Iginla signing a one-year contract worth as much as $6 million with Boston. The Bruins almost acquired the six-time all-star late last season when Pittsburgh got him from Calgary at the trade deadline.
Nathan Horton cashed in on his second strong post-season performance for the Bruins with a $37.1 million, seven-year contract in Columbus.
Daniel Alfredsson made perhaps the most surprising move. The 40-year-old forward is taking what might be his last shot at winning the Stanley Cup with the Detroit Red Wings, jilting the Ottawa Senators after being the face of the franchise.
The Senators tried to bounce back by making a bold trade for Anaheim forward Bobby Ryan in exchange for a pair of promising players and a first-round draft pick.
On Saturday, the second day NHL teams could sign free agents, the pickings were slimmer. Several top-tier players were taken off the market by teams that agreed to and signed deals following two days of talks.
St. Louis agreed to a one-year deal with veteran forward Derek Roy, pending a physical. The 30-year-old Roy split last season between the Dallas Stars and Vancouver Canucks and finished with seven goals and 21 assists.
Among the other relatively notable names still available Saturday included Mikhail Grabovski, Ilya Bryzgalov, Tim Thomas, Damien Brunner, Toni Lydman, Brad Boyes and Brenden Morrow.
Teemu Selanne is an unrestricted free agent, too, but no one expects the 43-year-old Finnish Flash to leave the Anaheim Ducks if he chooses to keep playing in North America.
Ducks general manager Bob Murray plans to contact Selanne next week to find out if he is close to making a decision on returning or retiring.
Senators general manager Bryan Murray, though, was among the many shocked when Alfredsson said he was ready to leave the only franchise he has played for in his 17-season NHL career.
"He indicated winning a Stanley Cup was an opportunity he couldn't pass up," Murray said. "He told me the two teams he was talking to. He told me he thought they were in a position ahead of us to make that happen."
While Alfredsson could have stayed in Ottawa to make more than the $5.5 million he will be paid next season by the Red Wings to chase the Cup, Horton is leaving a championship-contending team to be well-compensated by a franchise in Columbus that is without a post-season win in its 12 seasons.
"This is a team on the rise with great players, and I'm looking forward to being a part of it," Horton said.
Jagr, a five-time scoring champion and former NHL MVP, was able to continue his career during the lockout-shortened season when the Dallas Stars gave him a $4.55 million, one-year contract last summer.
After Jagr had 14 goals and 26 points in 34 games for the Stars, showing he could still produce, Dallas dealt him to the Bruins.
He had nine points in 11 regular-season games with Boston and 10 assists in 22 post-season games.
As a teen Jagr teamed with Mario Lemieux to help lead the Penguins to a pair of Stanley Cup championships.
-- The Associated Press
Republished from the Winnipeg Free Press print edition July 7, 2013 B4
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