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Devils' Jagr: 'I want to play until 50, maybe more'

by NHL.com Staff / NHL.com

Jaromir Jagr will celebrate his 43rd birthday during the 2014-15 NHL season, but that doesn't mean the New Jersey Devils right wing is thinking of quitting the game anytime soon.

"I want to play until 50, maybe more," Jagr told NorthJersey.com Thursday on the opening day of training camp.

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Jagr had 24 goals and 67 points last season, his best numbers since returning to the NHL after three seasons in the Kontinental Hockey League. He surpassed 700 goals and finished the season with 1,755 points, tied with Steve Yzerman for sixth on the all-time list.

"I'm expecting to be a little bit better, but I'm going to have a tough 20 days before the season starts to just get where I want to be and go from there," Jagr told NorthJersey.com before expounding on the reasons he thinks he could be even more productive.

"First of all, I don't have to get comfortable with the system, with the players. I know most of them. Hopefully, I stay healthy during the training camp. I didn't play one (preseason) game. I missed all of training camp last year. That would be a plus."

Jagr has scored 59 goals and 156 points in 200 regular-season games for the Philadelphia Flyers, Dallas Stars, Boston Bruins and Devils since coming back to North America. He played in all 82 games for the Devils last season.

The Devils re-signed Jagr to a one-year contract during the offseason, something the Czech legend said he prefers because it forces him to continue to prove himself in spite of his Hall of Fame credentials. Still, just because Jagr is unsigned beyond this season doesn't mean this will be his last hurrah.

"I don't think that way," Jagr told Tom Gulitti. "I love the game. What I want to tell you is I don't know if it's going to be the last year in the NHL. If I stay healthy, it's not going to be my last year in hockey. I want to play until 50, maybe more. But I want to play in the NHL if I'm good enough. I don't want to just be here just to be here.

"But the longer you play in the NHL, the better challenge you get for yourself. You're facing the best players in the world. So if I'm good enough to play in this League, I want to do it. If I'm not, I'm going to play somewhere else. But you have to stay healthy and you have to stay motivated and you have to love the game. So that's what I do. That's what I love."

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