Continued from page 1

But his strength and scoring ability could spark a Bruins team that was in fourth place in the East but ranked just seventh in the conference in goals _ with only 17 in their past eight games _ at the time of the trade.

“His career speaks for itself. He’s a strong player, protects the puck well,” Chiarelli said. “I know he’s 41 now, but he’s been one of their best players in Dallas. Last year he was one of (Philadelphia’s) best players.”

Jagr joins his sixth team after playing for Pittsburgh, the Washington Capitals, New York Rangers, Philadelphia Flyers and Dallas. He spent three seasons in Russia before returning to the NHL with the Flyers last season.

Jagr’s 679 goals are 11 behind Mario Lemieux, who is ninth in NHL history. Jagr is 12th with 1,000 assists and eighth with 1,679 points. His 116 game-winning goals are second, two behind Phil Esposito, and his 195 power-play goals are 18th.

“He gives us an element of offense,” Chiarelli said. “He gives us an element of size. In this day and age, you have to have the strength, fortitude, body, whatever you want to call it, to get to the front of the net.”

The Bruins had preferred to trade for Iginla, and Chiarelli thought he had done that last Wednesday in exchange for defenseman Matt Bartkowski, minor-league forward Alexander Khokhlachev and a first-round draft choice.

But the Flames‘ captain chose to go to Pittsburgh. He had a no-trade clause that allowed him to waive it for whatever team he picked.

The Stars get two players who were not among the Bruins‘ top prospects.

MacDermid, 23, has played in eight NHL games with no points and seven shots. In 37 games this season for the Providence Bruins of the AHL, he has four goals and two assists.

Payne, 19, had 24 goals and 21 assists with 75 penalty minutes in 60 games this season with the Plymouth Whalers of the Ontario Hockey League. The Bruins drafted him in the fifth round last year.