A Deeper Look at Jaromir Jagr

Jaromir Jagr is having a fantastic season. He has played on the first line all season, and leads the New Jersey Devils in points so far (16 Goals, 30 Assists, 46 Points). It’s hard to argue that he’s not the best player this Devils team has, and there are a multitude of numbers to prove so.

Let’s start with his possession numbers. The Devils as a team are fourth in the league in Corsi For %, and if you happen to be unfamiliar with what exactly Corsi is, then I strongly suggest you check out this glossary at ExtraSkater.com, which is where most of this information shall come from. Already prefacing that the Devils are a great puck possession team (54.2%), Jagr’s 57.1% is spectacular, second best on the team. Jaromir is 24th in the league overall, ahead of such players like Jeff Carter, Joe Pavelski, and Kevin Shattenkirk, all whom play on top 10 CF% teams. His ability to juke defenders out of their skates when rotating the puck in the offensive zone still doesn’t cease to make me laugh, and yell “You just got beat by an old man!”

Okay, so Jagr’s possession numbers are good and all, but you’d bet he doesn’t play a lot of minuets due to his age right?.. Right? You would be very wrong. Jagr averages 18.9 minutes per game, second on the team for forwards right behind Travis Zajac. Coach Pete DeBoer has said in the past that he would like to scale his minuets back a bit, but where the team is now, they just can’t afford to. He’s second on the team in TotTm% QoC (The quality of competition he faces while on the ice) at 0.295. He still faces tough competition while putting up great possession numbers, and his deployment rate doesn’t favor the offensive end too much. He’s ninth on the team in O-Zone start %, which is high, but not as high as you’d think the best offensive player on the team would be.

Now that we’ve proven that’s been an all-around great player this year, his numbers would be even higher if he had a legitimate Left Wing to play with. If you throw, let’s say, Paul Stastny on the wing with Jagr, that could be deadly. A potential trade for a LW isn’t out of the question, said GM Lou Lamoriello in a recent interview. I’m sure the team is skeptical of moving any future asset for a player now considering that there’s no first round pick this year, and anyone they are interested in trading for might not be a long term asset. We’ve seen the Devils move high picks before without hesitation (2nd rounder for Marek Zidlicky, 1st rounder for Cory Schneider), which could mean multiple possibilities are on the table.

One lingering issue for Jaromir Jagr could be the Olympics. He was named to the Czech Republic team with no surprise, but some have said that his body may not be able to endure the grind of playing in the Olympics and all the minutes he is getting in the regular season. He’s looked in great physical shape all season minus the first few games, so I’m not sure how a few games in Sochi should be a huge concern.

One this is for certain, though. Jagr is 27th in the league in points. In ahead of players like Alexander Steen, Jordan Eberle, and David Krecji. Without Jagr, it’s hard to figure out where the Devils would be now.


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