Jagr says refusal in talks 'a risk that didn't pay off'

PRAGUE, Czech Republic -- New York Rangers forward Jaromir Jagr said Tuesday that players' initial refusal of a salary cap in
talks with the NHL was a mistake.

"We started the fight because we didn't agree with the
introduction of salary caps," Jagr said. "Now, we'll be happy to
get them. We didn't expect the owners to be so tough and
persistent. It was a risk that didn't pay off."

Jagr was quoted, in Czech, on the Czech Ice Hockey Association's
Web site.

The NHL and the players' association recently agreed that a
salary cap model with an upper and lower limit will be the
centerpiece of a new agreement.

The lockout started last September and wiped out the entire
2004-05 NHL season.