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Numbers Game: Jagr moves to Bruins

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Scott Cullen
4/2/2013 2:33:45 PM
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In their second deal of the day, the Dallas Stars unloaded their leading scorer to the Boston Bruins, a team looking to bolster its forward production.

Numbers Game looks at the Bruins' acquisition of Jaromir Jagr.

The Bruins Get: RW Jaromir Jagr.

The NHL's active leader in goals (679) and points (1,679), 41-year-old Jaromir Jagr has shown that, in the right role, he can still be a productive player and the Boston Bruins are expecting that he will help boost an offence that is currently tied for 12th in the league with 2.74 goals per game and 24th on the power play (15.2%).

Jagr's value lies in his ability to generate offence. Even at his age, he's highly productive, leading the stars with 14 goals and 26 points in 34 games. His 17 even-strength points is tied for 59th in the league, with Alexander Ovechkin (among others) and ahead of the likes of Claude Giroux, Henrik Zetterberg, Jarome Iginla and Joe Thornton.

So with the understanding that Jagr can still produce offensively, despite his age, how might he be utilized in Boston? A spot on the wing with fellow Czech David Krejci might be a natural fit. Nathan Horton and Milan Lucic have been manning those wings, though neither has been great. Lucic, who has five goals in 33 games, could get bumped if Horton could play left wing. If not, then Horton might be the one to move down to the third line.

No matter how the Bruins end up shuffling their lines, though, the plus side is that they will upgrade not only the production from a scoring line, but they should get more from their third line, which has been a season-long issue for them, with RW Rich Peverley struggling and C Chris Kelly injured.

The Bruins are a team with championship aspirations, so it makes sense to go after a player of Jagr's pedigree. Not only is he a gifted scorer, but his size and strength allow him to control the puck in the offensive zone and it's part of the reason that he has thrived in the playoffs throughout his career, scoring 189 points in 180 career playoff games.

Jagr, who makes $4.55-million this season (www.capgeek.com), will be an unrestricted free agent in the summer and it appears that he has enough left in the tank to play at least one or two more seasons, if that's his desire.

The Stars Get: LW Lane MacDermid, RW Cody Payne and a second-round pick.

MacDermid is a 23-year-old tough guy winger who has no points and three fights in eight games with Boston over the past two seasons. He has six points and a minus-5 rating in 37 games for Providence in the AHL this year and hasn't ever scored enough to think that he'll be more than a fighter in the NHL.

Payne, 19, was a fifth-round pick of the Bruins in last summer's draft and scored 24 goals and 45 points, with a plus-16 rating in 66 games for Plymouth of the Ontario Hockey League. He had scored a total of 29 points in 110 games through his first two junior seasons, so there was definitely some development this year. Perhaps there could be more in the future for a Florida-born winger who goes 6-foot-2, 200 pounds.

It's entirely possible, however, that neither Payne nor MacDermid plays any more than a handful of games for the Stars; they simply aren't top prospects.

Much like the Stars' deal with Vancouver earlier in the day for Derek Roy, the second-round pick provides some value, about a 30% chance of landing an NHL player. The pick could be a first-round pick if the Bruins win at least two rounds in the playoffs, which isn't a reach.

Moving Jagr and Roy is going to shake up Dallas' lines for the remainder of the season. Jamie Benn, Loui Eriksson and Ray Whitney are the proven commodities. Cody Eakin should see more time, Erik Cole could play a bigger role and there is still room in the top six forwards for a prospect (Reilly Smith or Matt Fraser would be leading candidates) to get a legitimate chance to play in a scoring role for the last 13 games of the season.

The Stars made some one-year investments last summer, signing Jagr and trading for Roy and they had to make those moves with the understanding that, if they weren't in a playoff position, that those players would get moved to provide future value for the team. Now, it's time for the Stars to see what some of their kids can do and prepare to add more young talent to the organization in the offseason as they rebuild.

Scott Cullen can be reached at Scott.Cullen@bellmedia.ca and followed on Twitter at http://twitter.com/tsnscottcullen. For more, check out TSN Fantasy on Facebook.

Jaromir Jagr (Photo: The Canadian Press)

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(Photo: The Canadian Press)
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