The Jagr deal with Avangard Omsk is believed to be for two years plus an option for a third, and will pay Jagr about $7 million tax-free, which is the equivalent of about $11 million a season in the NHL.
Jagr had plenty to say, mentioning that playing in New York was an “extraordinary experience.” He also noted his regrets for not reaching the 84-point plateau that would have automatically extended his contract with the Rangers.
Jagr’s parting shot:
“And I also want to say to the people like Mike Milbury who made their living by criticizing me all the time, that they can kiss my ass.”
As for NHL players going to play overseas, Vladmir Ruzicka, the coach of the Czech Republic national team had this to say about players going to Russia: “The NHL should be afraid and very afraid because the Continental League in Russia is filthy rich and I can guarantee you that they will lure a lot of players, especially those who are about 30, who have done their time in the NHL and made some money there and they will offer them pretty good conditions and a lot of them will go to Russia.”
The man has a point. The money doesn’t go as far in the U.S. as it does overseas. And if Russian teams are going to pay players in before-tax dollars, there will be a lot of incentive to play there.