So, the way I figure it is this: the Jaromir Jagr saga is a modern-day recreation of the Star Wars Trilogy. George Lucas can sit back and nix the remakes. We've got it all right in front of us.
The 2010-11 season was just like the prequels. So much promise, so much hype.
In the end, utter disappointment.
You expected Darth Vader and you got emo-Anakin Skywalker, kind of like how many of us expected Alexei Kovalev but got disenchanted 'Alex' version instead.
But, that's that. The shoddy prequels are out of the way. Time for the good stuff.
The start of all of the Jagr insanity serves as your Star Wars: A New Hope.
It's encapsulates exactly what the idea of Jagr returning felt like: a new hope. A celebrated return for a Penguins legend who wasn't looked at as exactly legendary by much of the fanbase. Last they saw him, he was a whiny sod farmer from Tattooine. Well, except for the mythical home and the sod farming (that's more of a Staal family trait). He had aged, grown since the start of the story and perhaps learned to control his powers (emotions) a little better.
Villains were coming in to chip away at the hopes our rebel alliance, yet Petr "The Most Talkative Sports Agent In The World" Svoboda assured us that Jagr loved Pittsburgh, had the city in his heart, and alluded to his client wanting to do irrational things.
What's more irrational than fighting against the Galactic Empire? Spurning monetary gain for what's good, what's right. Completing a legacy. It was picture pefect!
And then everything went wrong.
The Empire Struck Back.
Jagr wasn't, in fact, Luke Skywalker. He was frickin' Darth Vader. Or nWo Hulk Hogan, or whoever else readily comes to mind. Someone who pulls off an epic betrayal that totally punches you in the gut, leaves you heaving for air.
Not a Benedict Arnold. There was too much nuance at that point in history, too much reality and conflicted emotion... no, this reads more like fiction, like some type of soap opera, maybe even a space opera, where the villain does something self-serving just because it's the wrong thing to do.
You leave the theater, or Twitter, utterly shocked. Han's frozen in carbonite, Luke just lost a hand and the Empire's in control.
What the hell just happened?
But the story isn't quite finished. We've only established the massive, massive conflict, not the resolution. Though it may take a few months, there will be a conclusion.
The cast of characters will return. We know the antagonists. That traitor bastard Jagr and his new sidekick Darth Talbot. So many foes to overcome.
Yet, they will not go unopposed. The saga will continue.
Sidney Crosby will return with a robot brain.
Evgeni Malkin will be unfrozen from his carbonite-induced slumber.
The Return of the Penguins will be upon us, playing at a Consol Energy Center near you
We've still got a couple of months to wait, but at least it's not that far, far off in the distance.