One of my favourite things about older players is that they’re more prone to honesty, given everything they’ve been through in the NHL. They’ve built their reputations, proven themselves, and tend to open up a little bit more as they get on in years.
Jaromir Jagr is one of those “on in years” players, and in reflecting on his time with the New York Rangers prior to playing them in a best-of-seven series (starting tonight), he made some awfully interesting comments about himself.
“I have a lot of good memories in New York. All of the years, we made the playoffs. In the first year nobody believed we could make the playoffs, and we did it. My first year was Hank’s first year and Tom Renney’s first year as a coach,” Jagr said. “We had such a good group of players and we surprised everybody. Such good memories in that hockey time for me.
“But now it’s a different story. I’m not good now. I was a lot better hockey player then, when I was in New York. Of course I’m different. I am honest. I cannot lie.”
“But now it’s a different story. I’m not good now.”
Is this fishing? Does dude want us to pat him on the back and tell him how amazing he still is? Or are his personal standards so high that he means it? Or does he want us to say “if this is him bad, how terrible should we feel about our own games?” I’m aware he’s not at the level he was with New York, but not good?
I dunno. All I know is that’s one hell of a quote from one hell of a player.
“I’m not good now.” Whatever you say, Jaromir.