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Vaulted: Panthers Acquire Jagr from Devils at 2015 Trade Deadline

by Jameson Olive / @JamesonCoop /

Welcome to "Vaulted," a new series in which we take a look back a moments that are worthy of being enshrined within the Florida Panthers Virtual Vault, which is presented by Baptist Health.

It only took a few draft picks to bring a living legend to South Florida.

In a move that proved very beneficial to both the team's present and future, the Florida Panthers acquired future Hall-of-Fame forward Jaromir Jagr from the New Jersey Devils on Feb. 26, 2015 in exchange for just a second-round pick in 2015 and a conditional third-round selection in 2016.

"I think it brings stability to our young team," Panthers General Manager Dale Tallon said shortly after making the savvy deadline move. "It gives us an opportunity in the next 20 games to make a good run to make the playoffs. I'm excited about it. I think it's a great move for our franchise."

[The Vault: Who could forget this awesome Jagr bobblehead?]

Prior to joining the Panthers, Jagr's resume spoke for itself. A two-time Stanley Cup champion, the Kladno, Czech Republic native had already amassed a mountain of accolades, including five Art Ross Trophies, one Hart Trophy and a whopping nine trips to the NHL All-Star Game.

And even though Florida fell short of the playoffs that season, Jagr, who was 43 years old at the time, shined down the home stretch. Fitting right in alongside Aleksander Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau on the club's top line, he tallied six goals and 12 assists in 20 games after the trade.

For his efforts, the Panthers rewarded Jagr with a one-year contract that summer.

"We are extremely pleased to have re-signed Jaromir," Tallon said after the signing. "He found instant chemistry playing alongside Aleksander Barkov and Jonathan Huberdeau. Jaromir's intense work ethic and positive attitude has had a tremendous impact on our locker room."

Picking up right where he left off, Jagr continued to turn back the clock in his first full season with the Cats. Spending most of the year teaming up with Barkov and Huberdeau once again, the ageless wonder not only brought back his iconic mullet, but also led the charge on offense.

Finishing with a team-leading 66 points (27 goals, 39 assists), Jagr's contributions helped the Panthers win the Atlantic Division with a franchise-record 103 points during the 2015-16 season.

On a personal note, he also won the Masterton Trophy - given annually to the player who "best exemplifies the qualities of perseverance, sportsmanship and dedication to hockey" - that year.

"When he came in, I took my game to another level and for sure everybody else on the team did too," Barkov told in 2017 when asked about Jagr's contributions to the team. "He just helped so much everybody on the team and is one of the most important guys in my career."

Brought back on a second one-year deal, Jagr's final season with the Panthers was highlighted by an historic moment. With an assist against the Boston Bruins on Dec. 23, 2016, he recorded the 1,888th point of his career, overtaking Mark Messier for second on the NHL's all-time scoring list.

Following the point, play was stopped and Jagr was presented with a golden stick at center ice.

"I was dreaming about something else," said Jagr, who earned the assist after a shot bounced off his pants and onto the stick of a teammate. "I thought I was going to score a beautiful goal."

[The Vault: Jagr is honored after passing Messier on the NHL's all-time scoring list]

The oldest active player in the NHL during the 2016-17 campaign, the 45-year-old finished with 46 points (16 goals, 30 assists) while suiting up in all 82 games for the first time since 2013-14.

"Whatever you wish for, you can accomplish anything as long as you work and you love it," Jagr said earlier that season. "I still love the game. Thanks to the Florida Panthers, they gave me the opportunity to play here. I love the game. I'm willing to do anything to play as long as I can."

Last taking the ice in the NHL during the 2017-18 season as a member of the Calgary Flames - his 24th season lacing up his skates in the NHL -- Jagr currently ranks second in NHL history in points (1,921), third in goals (766), fifth in assists (1,155) and third in games played (1,733).

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