Russia in running for Jagr

LANCE HORNBY -- Toronto Sun

, Last Updated: 8:28 AM ET

When the salary cap became a reality, the initial fear was young National Hockey Leaguers would run to Europe.

But Jaromir Jagr, who was due to be the highest-paid NHLer last season at $11 million US before losing 24% of that in the rollback and another $500,000 that exceeded the individual cap, could lead the charge. The New York Rangers' top gun could end up back with the Avangard Omsk team in Russia.

The club -- which is owned by Russian billionaire Roman Abramovich, who also owns English soccer club Chelsea -- shelled out millions for Jagr to play half a season in 2004-05. The Rangers were either going to keep Jagr or buy him out.

"It's complicated," Jagr told the Czech daily Mlada Fronta Dnes. "I want to hear the opinions of both clubs. It should be solved within three weeks."

Jagr insisted money was not going to influence his decision.


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