Jagr scores 700th goal
New Jersey Devils forward Jaromir Jagr became the seventh player in NHL history to reach 700 goals when he scored at 3:31 of the second period Saturday in a 6-1 win against the New York Islanders.
Jagr skated in from the right circle and took a shot through traffic that deflected off the skate of Islanders defenseman Andrew MacDonald and past goalie Evgeni Nabokov, giving the Devils a 2-0 lead in a 6-1 win.
"I never consider myself a goal-scorer," Jagr told MSG Network after the game in undoubtedly the understatement of the season, "so to reach 700 goals is big for me."
The Devils quickly retrieved the puck for Jagr, who was seen skating off after the period with the memento in his glove.
"I don't even know what happened," Jagr said as he watched the goal on replay. "It was a lucky bounce, no question. I tried to protect the puck and they gave me the middle of the ice. I tried to use it, and as soon as I tried to shoot the puck somebody went down and it went in.
"A lot of goals, you wonder how they went, and a lot of goals they should go in but they don't."
Devils coach Peter DeBoer said the goal was vintage Jagr. He controlled the puck along the boards and kept it away from Islanders forward Kyle Okposo before breaking free and moving in front.
"We talked about trying to get them stuck in their defensive zone and make them defend, and he's king of offensive zone time holding the puck," DeBoer said. "It was a great goal."
Jagr, who has 19 goals this season, is eight behind Mike Gartner for sixth on the all-time list.
Jagr has 198 power-play goals and 11 shorthanded. With the goal Saturday, he has five game-winners this season, giving him 123 total, which is first all-time.
"I've played with so many good players and I play in an area [of the ice] where so many of the offensive players score a lot of goals," Jagr said.
Jagr would later tie Marcel Dionne for ninth on the all-time assists list when he set up a power-play goal by Marek Zidlicky at 8:07 of the second, giving the Devils a 4-1 lead. It was his 1,040th career assist.
Jagr is seventh on the all-time points list with 1,740. The 42-year-old has played 1,452 NHL games since making his debut in 1990 and shows no signs of stopping anytime soon.
Asked if the chase for 800 goals was on, Jagr laughed.
"It might take me two more years," he said.
Nabokov gave up Brett Hull's 700th NHL goal on Feb. 10, 2003 while playing for the San Jose Sharks against the Detroit Red Wings.