Pittsburgh Penguins retire Jaromír Jágr's iconic number 68 jersey

The Czech star is in Pittsburgh this weekend for a jersey retirement ceremony, which will take place ahead of the team's game on Sunday evening.

Jason Pirodsky

Written by Jason Pirodsky Published on 18.02.2024 14:20:00 (updated on 18.02.2024) Reading time: 2 minutes

The Pittsburgh Penguins are set to retire Jaromír Jágr's iconic number 68 jersey in a ceremony this evening before the team's game with the Los Angeles Kings. Ahead of the momentous occasion, the former Penguins superstar graced the ice with the team once again, captivating fans with his enduring skill and infectious enthusiasm.

Jágr returned to the ice on Saturday for a practice session at the UPMC Lemieux Sports Complex with the current Penguins team, which evoked a sense of nostalgia and admiration among spectators, as the fifty-two-year-old legend effortlessly showcased his still-enviable talent.

Amidst chants and cheers from 1,500 devoted fans on Saturday, Jágr shared the ice with contemporary stars Sidney Crosby, Evgeni Malkin, and others. He even slipped in a sneaky backhand past goalie Alex Nedeljkovic, sharing the moment on Instagram.

The practice session served as a prelude to the upcoming jersey retirement ceremony this evening, which will pay tribute to the enduring legacy of a player who helped shape the identity of the Penguins franchise. The City of Pittsburgh has even declared today Jaromír Jágr Day in honor of the Czech hockey legend's legacy.

Jágr's career with the team spanned eleven seasons and two Stanley Cup championships. Reflecting on his impact on the team, former teammates and Penguins legends underscored Jágr's pivotal role in shaping the franchise's trajectory during a pivotal period in its history.

"When you look at just the history of hockey, he's somebody that you're always going to think about," Crosby told reporters after the practice. "I think we all feel pretty fortunate to be able to be a part of this. You don't know when you're going to have opportunities like this. There's a lot of pride that comes with playing for this team for a lot of reasons, and he's one of them."

“[He’s a] legend on ice. It’s like crazy,” Malkin added. “We know how good he is. But I’m surprised he’s still skating pretty well. I’m excited to skate today with him. Great memory for myself. Growing up, I watched how he played."


Tonight's ceremony will take place ahead of the game between the Pittsburgh Penguins and Los Angeles Kings, which starts at midnight Prague time. Jágr's number 68 jersey will ascend to the rafters of PPG Paints Arena alongside the likes of Mario Lemieux and Michel Briere.

Jágr will become the fourth Czech hockey star to have his number retired by an NHL franchise, joining the ranks of goalkeeper Dominik Hašek and forwards Milan Hejduk and Patrik Eliáš.

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