|Former Bruins Jaromir Jagr, Steven Kampfer working out better with Panthers||03.31.15 at 3:48 pm ET|
Thanks to Shawn Thornton, it’s always a reunion when the Panthers come to town. Yet it’s a pair of other former Bruins that have found new success in their respective careers by going to Florida.
Jaromir Jagr and Steven Kampfer have both turned heads since joining the Panthers. Since being acquired by the Panthers prior to the trade deadline, Jagr has done much more than he did down the stretch with the Bruins in 2013. Kampfer, a former Bruins prospect who played 38 games in their Cup-winning 2010-11 season, has resurfaced in the NHL after years of struggling with injuries and inconsistency in the AHL.
The Bruins traded a conditional second-round pick and prospects Lane MacDermid and Cody Payne to Dallas for Jagr in 2013. The pick became a first-rounder when the B’s reached the Eastern Conference finals, but Jagr did not score a postseason goal for the Bruins. He played well as a third-liner before spelling Tyler Seguin on Patrice Bergeron‘s line, but the team parted with him at season’s end.
Two years later, Jagr was flipped from New Jersey to Florida after the Panthers had moved Sean Bergenheim to Minnesota. Florida gave up a second-round pick in 2015 and a conditional third-rounder in 2016.
If the Panthers make the playoffs, Jagr will be a primary reason as to why. Playing on Florida’s first line, Jagr has four goals and eight assists for 12 points in 14 games. Florida general manager Dale Tallon said recently that the team is interested in re-signing the 43-year-old after the season.
“He’s done everything we expected,” Panthers coach Gerard Gallant said Tuesday. “He’s [gone] out and played with those two young kids, and the line’s played very well since he’s been here and our team’s played very well since he’s been here, so it’s been real positive.”
The aforementioned kids are 21-year-old Jonathan Huberdeau and 19-year-old Aleksander Barkov, both of whom were top-three picks in their respective drafts.
“It’s kind of crazy,” Huberdeau said Tuesday. “We were saying he won a Stanley Cup when I wasn’t even born.”
Age gaps aside, Jagr has fit with the two youngsters. He still plays keep-away with the puck, and it’s paying off.
“He’s a first-line player, for sure,” Huberdeau said. “Even when we played against him in New Jersey, I thought he was really good. He’s so good at protecting the puck and stuff. Just playing with him, it creates more space [for] me and Barkov. I think we’re just taking advantage of that.”
As for Kampfer, Florida has become a home for the Michigan native (whose parents actually live in Florida, come to think of it) after his 2012 trade from the Bruins to the Wild led to two seasons of AHL play.
Kampfer’s stint in the Wild organization wasn’t ideal. In addition to concussions and knee injuries, he never really got a shot to play NHL games. His only games with the big club came in the 2011-12 season, when he replaced Boston acquisition Greg Zanon.
“It taught me a lot to grow up as a person, more so than anything,” Kampfer said. “It was different because they had their six guys that they were going to roll there, so you knew you were just going to go down, you were going to be a depth guy and play in the minors, but it was good. The coaches down in Houston during the lockout year were awesome. Then last year, it was just trying to play hard and hopefully you get a chance, but they had their six guys that they were just going to keep rolling.”
Kampfer signed with the Rangers in the offseason, but was traded to Florida after Matt Hunwick beat him out for the final spot on Alain Vigneault’s blue line. After starting the season in the AHL, the now-26-year-old has played 23 games for the Panthers, even seeing time at forward Sunday against Ottawa.
It would seem that Kampfer now has a future with the Panthers, as he was given a two-year contract extension earlier this month.
‘I’m feeling good,” he said of his Panthers experience. “Obviously feeling good and our team’s doing well, that’s the most important thing. Good experience, good locker room, great organization.”
|Jaromir Jagr doesn’t know who Jack Eichel is, wants to play against him||11.10.14 at 12:32 pm ET|
Chelmford’s Jack Eichel is expected to be a top-two pick in the coming NHL draft. As he dominates his freshman year at Boston University, the accolades and comparisons are pouring in rapidly.
In a recent appearance on Middays with MFB, Pierre McGuire compared the 6-foot-2 Eichel to Jaromir Jagr given his strength and ability to hold onto the puck. So, with the Devils in town, it seemed worth it to get Jagr’s thoughts on the young scorer.
In true Jagr fashion, the 42-year-old admitted to having no clue who Eichel was, but seemed pretty excited anyway.
“He’s like a Czech kid?” Jagr asked.
“He’s going to be drafted this year?”
Sure is. Then Jagr smiled.
“Hopefully I’m going to have a chance to stay here one more year in the NHL so I can have a chance to see him,” he said.
Maybe, just maybe, it would be like Jaromir Jagr against Jaromir Jagr.
Of course, if Eichel was exactly like Jagr, that matchup would be a scoreless game in which the two took turns keeping the puck in the corner. That still sounds like something worth watching.
|David Krejci named to Czech Olympic team||01.06.14 at 2:28 pm ET|
The Czech Republic’s men’s ice hockey roster for the 2014 Sochi Olympics has been announced, with Bruins forward David Krejci among the players chosen.
This is the second Olympics appearance for Krejci, who represented the Czech Republic in the 2010 games in Vancouver. Krejci will be joined by former Bruins Jaromir Jagr, Vladimir Sobotka and Tomas Kaberle.
The complete roster is as follows:
Goaltender: Jakub Kovar, Ondrej Pavelec, Alexander Salak.
Defense: Michal Barinka, Radko Gudas, Tomas Kaberle, Lukas Krajicek, Zbynek Michalek, Michal Rozsival, Ladislav Smid, Marek Zidlicky.
Forward: Roman Cervenka, Patrik Elias, Michael Frolik, Martin Hanzal, Ales Hemsky, Jaromir Jagr, David Krejci, Milan Michalek, Petr Nedved, Jiri Novotny, Ondrej Palat, Tomas Plekanec, Vladimir Sobotka, Jakub Voracek.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Appreciative Jaromir Jagr on stint with Bruins: ‘We had a pretty good run’||10.28.13 at 12:11 pm ET|
Bruins fans gave a gift to Jaromir Jagr which he’d never received in all of years playing hockey.
“I remember my first shift I played here,” said Jagr, “everybody stand up and clap their hands. They show me the respect the first time I step on ice. That never happened to me before.”
On Saturday night, Boston welcomed back Jagr, the NHL’s active leading scorer, and the future Hall of Famer delivered two assists in the Devils’ come-from-behind 4-3 victory over his former team at the Garden.
The Bruins parted ways with Jagr shortly after the Blackhawks hoisted the Cup, and he signed with New Jersey in July. The former mulleted superstar from the Czech city of Kladno, who still claims he plans on scoring a goal at the age of 50, spoke highly of his time with the Bruins.
“The fans really like the hockey here, they understand the hockey here,” Jagr said. “We had a pretty good run. Maybe with a little more luck we would have been holding the Cup.”
Though Jagr is only 17 goals shy of 700, he failed to put the puck in the net during the B’s 22-game playoff run.
“I know a lot of people are going to say he didn’t score,” Bruins coach Claude Julien said. “And he didn’t. But he certainly added a lot to our team.”
Previously known for tormenting Bruins fans every spring during his time with Pittsburgh, Jagr’s lasting memory in Boston will be his assist on Patrice Bergeron‘s overtime goal against the Penguins in Game 3 of the Eastern Conference finals. Jagr won over his teammates by outdueling Evgeni Malkin for a loose puck on the boards, and the victory gave the Bruins a commanding 3-0 lead in the series.
Along with Jagr’s buying into the team concept, Julien also was impressed with the example the veteran set for his teammates.
“He worked hard, he had a great attitude, he made things happen,” Julien said. “I still remember in overtime there in Chicago where he just took a shot, hit the crossbar, and it could have been the winning goal. He was a good example for young guys — working out, doing extra and trying to stay on the top of his game, so he led by example in a lot of ways. We were happy to have him.”
|David Krejci, Jaromir Jagr invited to Czech Republic orientation camp||09.06.13 at 2:38 pm ET|
The orientation camp roster for the Czech Republic Olympic team was announced Friday, with Bruins center David Krejci and former B’s winger Jaromir Jagr among the names.
The two are part of a group of 67 candidates to represent the Czech Republic this winter in Sochi.
If he is to make the team, this would be Krejci’s second Olympics and Jagr’s fifth. Both players were a member of the 2010 team.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.
|Report: Jaromir Jagr agrees with Devils||07.22.13 at 12:05 pm ET|
According to ESPN’s Pierre LeBrun, the Devils and free agent right wing Jaromir Jagr have agreed to terms on a one-year contract. Czech TV reporter Roman Jedlicka had reported a deal was close over the weekend.
The Bruins elected to let Jagr leave via free agency after trading a first-round pick, Lane MacDermid and Cody Payne to the Stars for him prior to the trade deadline. Jagr had two goals and seven assists for nine points in 11 regular-season games for the B’s, and he had a solid postseason performance despite not scoring (he had 10 assists) in 22 playoff games.
|Peter Chiarelli re-rules out Jaromir Jagr return||07.14.13 at 12:47 pm ET|
WILMINGTON — Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said Sunday that the team is not considering signing free agent right wing Jaromir Jagr.
After trading for him last season, Chiarelli told Jagr at the team’s exit meetings that the B’s would not be signing him. However, upon Nathan Horton telling the B’s he was leaving, Chiarelli said prior to free agency that the B’s might consider looping back to the 41-year-old. He clarified Sunday that the team has decided to move on from him.
“We’re done,” Chiarelli said. “We’re done for now.”
Jagr does not plan on retiring and is reportedly interested in signing with the Hurricanes. In 11 regular-season games for the Bruins, he had two goals and seven assists for nine points. Playing mostly on Patrice Bergeron’s line in the postseason, he went without a goal and had 10 assists in 22 playoff games.
The Bruins have an opening in their bottom six, but Chiarelli plans on having an open competition among youngsters Matt Fraser, Reilly Smith and Jordan Caron, among others. Asked whether Jagr would be an option for that competition, Chiarelli said the B’s aren’t looking at him or anybody else.
For more on the Bruins, visit weei.com/bruins.