Good-Bye Jarome

Kent Wilson
March 29 2013 11:11AM

 

 

It's kind of fitting that the end of the Jarome era in Calgary comes with the Flames awash in failure and uncertainty, because that's how his time began with the team as well. When Jarome made his debut as a fresh faced 19-year old rookie in the 1996 playoffs, little did he know it would take another eight years for the club to make the post-season again.

The "Young Guns" era was the last time the organization tried to rebuild in earnest and it stands are the darkest period in the franchise's history. Jarome grew up as an NHL player amidst a weak Canadian dollar, dwindling budgets, dead puck hockey and in the long shadows of newly departed legends. Even for ardent fans who currently see nothing but gloom on the horizon, it's difficult to adequately describe the hopelessness and irrelevancy that stained the Flames in that long winter between 1997 and 2004.  

Profligate spending in the league's biggest markets was rampant, exacerbated by the imbalance between the two North American currencies. The club shed stars at a rapid rate as a result and in their stead sold hope to the an increasingly weary and apathetic fanbase by signing the less capable brothers of recognizable players. Even finishing at the bottom of the standings for consecutive seasons failed to deliver any sort of meaningful respite from despair: the club chose Daniel Tkaczuck and Rico Fata with back-to-back sixth overall picks. 

Enduring, perpetual failure never seemed more certain in those days. Flames fandom at the time was little more than a grey, featureless landscape bereft of a discernible horizon. The Calgary Flames were the league's weak sister, an also-ran, a punchline.

Except for Jarome Iginla.

Like a new tree that takes root in the ashes of a devastating forest fire, Iginla grew into a towering presence in Calgary, a figurehead who led the franchise out of its dark ages, establishing the Flames organization as relevant in the eyes of its enemies and in the hearts of its fans again. Even before Darryl Sutter, Miikka Kiprusoff and the uncanny playoff run, there was Iginla; singlehandedly laying waste to the league in 2002 (52 goals, 96 points) and scoring Olympic golden goals. Not many fans remember this anymore, but Iginla's stardom wasn't immediate like, say, Crosby or Ovechkin. His emergence was far more slow and gradual, marked by doubts and uncertainty. He was a late addition to the 2002 Olympic squad, at the time still considered merely a pretty good player on a pretty bad team.  

But Iginla eventually transcended the expectations and labels that so undermined the Flames at the time. He became the reason to watch Calgary on any given night, an unstoppable force of strength and will. He was an oasis in a desert of mediocrity and failure, a beacon of hope to a fanbase that had become numb to the near incessant drip, drip, drip of failure.

As such, Iginla wasn't simply a great player for this team and this city, not merely a captain of the club or a Saturday night highlight reel. He was the symbol of Calgary's resurrection. The catalyst of its renassaince.

Which is why, beyond all the on-ice concerns, it was so hard for the Calgary Flames franchise to finally move him and for the fanbase to accept his departure. Iginla was a ray of light in the team's darkest hour, a savior from despair. To see that light extinguished in Calgary, however inevitable or unavoidable the outcome, makes the fans and city feel a little colder and a little darker.

Now some words from the rest of FN on what Jarome meant to them:

Ryan Lambert

There are three things that pretty much stand out to me about Jarome Iginla, I would say. All of them, I should think, will come up from other people as well as me. I certainly don't think this will be ground-breaking or revelatory.

The first is The Shift, which is still one of the most incredible things I've ever seen a hockey player do. He played for so long and so hard and was the ultimate highlight of everything that was wrong with the old NHL before they changed all the rules. That's what a captain does in the tough situations, I think. That's what makes Jarome Iginla a legend in this city. He left everything on the ice, did it all, and still didn't get the big prize. Tough to see.

The second is the Trevor Linden handshake thing. That was just a bananas display of respect for an opponent he had every right to dislike given how heated things got throughout the latter years of the Canucks/Flames rivalry before the former started running away with the division every year. I don't know if Linden was right when he called Iginla the best player in the league, but something like that, well, it was just unbelievable to see. No one else in the NHL would have done that, but Iginla had guys coming back out of the tunnel.

And finally, just to show Iginla's grace in all things, there was the infamous "Setting up the play," line of questioning in the postgame scrum. Some idiot was asking an absolutely ridiculous nonsense question and he tried so, so hard to understand what was being said. Most NHLers would have given a one-word answer just to never have it come up again, but Iginla hung in there to the bitter end, hoping in vain that something would come of it. What a guy.]

Justin Azevedo

Man, this week. It's just completely beaten me down on so many levels. It's hard to know where to start with what Jarome meant to me - I've never known this team without him. Personally, I knew him better than most; hell, we even had him at our house for dinner a couple times.

It's just really tough to see this franchise in this state. Iggy was really the last unbroken link in the chain that is my fandom: tragedy after tragedy, but Iggy was the constant. The best player to ever put on the Red and Gold deserved better from this franchise as a whole.

As for my Iggy moment? I penned an article over at the other place earlier in the week, so I'm just going to copy and paste a paragraph here: 

...the thing with legendary moments is that you can describe them in the most generic way possible, yet the moment itself is able to be simultaneously identified with an amazing, exacting specificity. I say "The Shift" and every Flames fan on the planet immediately knows what I'm talking about.

No doubt that's many of your favourite Iggy moment as well - as it damn well should be. Let's be honest here, that '04 team sucked. They didn't make it to the Cup finals because of the heart of the players or the leadership in the dressing room or because they were more skilled than everyone else - no, they made it for two reasons: the first is that they got lucky. Caught lightning in a bottle. The second is that they had a world-beater at every position, with Iginla leading them all. Off the top of my head I can't think of another effort displayed by a player comparable to what Iginla did during that run - and it all culminated with, and was best exemplified by one moment:

The Shift.

Thanks for everything, Iggy. Calgary won't ever be the same. Go get that Cup.

Vintage Flame

It's hard to pick just one moment that Iggy has left an impression over the past sixteen years. When you often think of any of the great moments that the Flames have experienced, even through other players, Iginla is usually involved.

Having been fortunate enough to be present for many of his milestones, it's hard to narrow it down to just one. There is no doubt that he is the best player that has ever graced this organization.

Therefore, I think I have to look at also what he meant as a man to this team. His countless charitable acts to the community and just how much he has meant as an ambassador to the game itself.

One of my favorite Iggy moments actually came in concert with one of the teams I hate the most; the Vancouver Canucks.

That's right, Trevor Linden's last game with the Canucks. It was a game where Iggy clearly stole the spotlight on the ice. Who could forget Iggy's extended ironman shift towards the end of the game, where his teammates tried so desperately to get him that 50th goal. When he finally got it it wasn't the game winning goal by any means, afterall, the Flames were laying a beating on the Canucks. But the Captain handled himself with poise and grace, as he has always done.

By the end of the game, the Canucks were not going to the playoffs and they had just been beaten down by a division rival, the only thing left was to celebrate a truly phenomenal career from Linden as a Canuck. As the fans roared in appreciation, Iginla realized, with class, what was needed to be done.

And so he led his teammates back onto the ice, so that they too may pay their respects to one who truly deserved it. The gesture was not only appreciated and recognized by Linden, but also the Vancouver faithful.

Iggy demonstrated that "the game" wasn't just about what jersey you wore or what milestones you hit. Sometimes it's just about the man. That's how I've been feeling since he got traded. Was it necessary for the team to deal him? For all intents and purposes, yes. But am I happy about him leaving this team, this organization, no.

I wrote my very first article for FlamesNation about Iggy and what makes an elite player elite. I read it again last night, and I stand by every word to this day.

Sometimes... It's just about the man.

Ryan Pike

Like most Calgarians, I have had the occasion to bump into Jarome Iginla around town. But it wasn't until I started covering the Flames that I had the chance to see him on a regular basis. It was clear as day that he was a tremendous hockey player - he has the hardware to prove it - but the amazing thing was how composed and calm he was.

While other players are occasionally a bit aloof or nervous around the media, Jarome Iginla was always at ease. Whether he was being grilled about the team's performance following a loss, or talking AHL recalls, or discussing his memories of the World Juniors or his first goal, he was always a consummate professional and just a very nice guy. From the first time I interviewed him - several training camps ago - until his last post-game scrum following the St. Louis game, he always spoke from the heart and made interviewers feel like we were doing him a favour asking him about things.

Best of luck in Pittsburgh, Jarome. 

Jarome Iginla

pic via Cheryl Adams

 

39d8109299a9795cb3b41a4e9b49d501
Former Nations Overlord. Current FN contributor and curmudgeon For questions, complaints, criticisms, etc contact Kent @ kent.wilson@gmail. Follow him on Twitter here.
Avatar
#1 BurningSensation
March 29 2013, 12:30PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Well said.

Merci

Avatar
#2 Z
March 29 2013, 11:25AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
3
props

just so we're clear: trolling on this thread won't be tolerated today. thanks - ja

p.s. oilers suck

Avatar
#3 SmellOfVictory
March 29 2013, 11:29AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Farewell, big fella. Here's to hoping you finally get your cup this year.

Avatar
#4 RexLibris
March 29 2013, 11:34AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
1
props

Iginla was a lot of things to Oiler fans. He certainly broke our hearts a number of times over the years. Believe me, if anyone can empathize with what Flames fans are feeling right now, it should be a fan of the Edmonton Oilers.

I won't miss seeing him in the lineup in the Battles of Alberta, and wouldn't at all mind if he spent some time breaking the hearts of Flyers fans for a few years in Pittsburgh, New York or wherever he ends up next season.

Lowetide has an expression that he often uses when the Oilers trade or release a player and, with apologies to my Nations colleague, I think I'll employ it here: Sail On, Alberta's son.

Avatar
#5 fretsey
March 29 2013, 11:42AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Great article Kent. I don't think I've completely come to terms with the fact that Jarome is gone. I could care less that Dallas most likely got more for Brenden Morrow than Calgary got for The Red Knight,I'm just so very happy for Iggy to have a chance at The Cup. So many great memories...so unfortunate that it had to come to this... Still hasn't sunk in yet.

Avatar
#6 EricOG
March 29 2013, 11:48AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
1
props

Bad form. We're good sports about flame wars usually, but not here and not today - ed.

Avatar
#7 BurningSensation
March 29 2013, 12:19PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
6
props

I'm a bit (ok a lot) older than most of the people here, as I was around when the Flames arrived from Atlanta and played at the old Corral.

It was with no small amount of horror that I reacted to the Nieuwendyk trade. We were shipping out a #1 center, in his prime, who had a sterling resume of 50 and 40 goal seasons as well as a Cup. And the return? Some guy picked outside of the top of his draft by the Stars. We were furious.

Then I watched the WJC that year, and discovered that this kid we had traded for was a potential monster. He dominated the WJC with power and skill, and was clearly head and shoulders above everyone else at the tournament. So there was hope.

When he arrived in Calgary to play in the playoff series against Chicago there was a lot of questions about what he could bring to what was still a pretty decent team. He scored goals. He played the body. He was going to be good.

For the next few years we watched as he went from teenager to 20 goal scorer to 30 goal scorer, and as the team was dismantled around him, into the lone bright spot on the club. If he had never achieved a higher level offensively, that would have been OK, as at that time he was our Trevor Linden, a swiss-army knife forward who could play the game at a high level any way you liked. Power, finesse, leader, whatever you needed, he could bring.

It was at this time that rumours began to swirl that Button was going to move him out for Mike Peca (think about that for a moment and try not to throw up - I still can't take Button seriously knowing he considered that deal), but cooler heads prevailed and Iggy stayed.

And then he went supernova. The league was all clutch-grab-trap, and Iginla packed on some extra muscle to improve his game - and became the best powerforward, indeed, the best player, in the game. He was unstoppable. In a dead puck era he was the lone 50 goal sniper. He was robbed of a Hart trophy by a Montreal reporter, but never griped. He was a late addition to the Olympics but he ended up being arguably the most dominant player in the tournament.

The run in 2004 cemented things, he was the real deal.

The 'Shift' (and the Gelinas goal that never was, but should have been), the fight with Lecavalier, the Linden salute, the way he dealt with the media, everything. He was exactly the kind of player that Calgary fans had dreamed of, and he was ours, and what is more, he was classy and articulate in ways Fleury could never be.

After 2005 when the game opened back up, he wasn't ever quite the same. His game was built for the trap era, not a wide-open power play festival, but he adapted again. He slimmed down, shedding muscle for speed. He continued to score 30 a year like clockwork regardless of the quality of his linemates. He persisted. He had won our hearts, but he kept the promises his talent had made.

I am very sad to see him leave, but want nothing but the best for him.

We won't ever see his like again.

Avatar
#8 OnlyOil
March 29 2013, 12:21PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Jarome Iginla, Wow, what a player, what a man, what a rival. I'm a huge Oilers fan and have been forever, but Iggy is a living legend in my opinion.If you have a son, you would want him to be just like Jarome, an outstanding human being, displaying nothing but class and respect, a true leader. It's so strange to think Jarome is not a flame any longer, in fact I find myself feeling bad/sad for flame fans. Everyone knew this was going to happen but it doesn't make it easy. It hurts like hell when the heart has been ripped out your community/team. In Edmonton we know all about that feeling, fear not the pain of it all will subside...eventually.

It's already been said but in this instance very appropriate, As Lowetide would say " Sail On Kamloops Blazer"

Avatar
#10 meat1
March 29 2013, 12:36PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

People are probably tired of hearing me support Jarome. I just finished standing up for him again in the previous article.

Class act all the way through!

"He came, He saw, He Kicked Ass"

Good-bye #12....

Avatar
#11 RKD
March 29 2013, 01:02PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Jarome Iginla is a class act, I believe a lot his humility comes from his father Elvis Iginla. Iginla never acted as if it was his right to be an NHLer it was a privilege and he treated it that way. It was an absolute joy to watch him over the past 16 years and his accomplishments are truly remarkable. In the dark times, Iginla would carry the burden of the Flames organization but never once complained or took the easy way out. He stood up for his teammates on and off the ice. Jarome Iginla put the Calgary Flames back on the map and gave the Flames something to cheer for. Best of luck to you Jarome, I hope you get your Stanley Cup. You deserve it.

Avatar
#12 ?
March 29 2013, 01:31PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

The Lion of Calgary.

Goodbye

Avatar
#13 Steve zee
March 29 2013, 01:34PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

For those of us out there with big imaginations... Imagine Calgary turns things around, gets lucky, whatever, and makes it to the playoffs, eventually the finals vs. dare I say it, the Penguins... And Flames win....

Avatar
#14 Bruins
March 29 2013, 01:35PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Outstanding article. Would have loved to see him in a Bruins uniform. Best of luck Jerome and I hope you win the cup.

Avatar
#15 Hank Williams
March 29 2013, 02:00PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Thank you Kent for that article. Worthy of a Pulitzer in my book. You have summed up how so many of us feel. Iginla's game is all about repect. Respect your team mates, your opponent and the game itself. Some of my favorite Iginla memories are his fights. They always meant something. I remember watching a young Iginla fighting Brendan Shanahan right in front of me to the left of the Flames goal. What a battle. Old bull versus new bull. Classic stuff. I love watching now, Old bull Iginla, battle new bulls made out of similar ilk to himself and over time reluctantly passing the torch as Shanny obliged to him years ago. Iggy knows it is his right, obligation and his privilege to the game. He is a very unique player. We have been very lucky to witness it so close.

Avatar
#16 dean the raven
March 29 2013, 02:04PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Yes, he was perhaps the greatest to ever don the uniform. At a time like this it's hard to have anything but positives to say about such a legendary player. But for all he has done for the organization, the one thing he did on the way out to screw them out of a decent return on the deal can only be described as selfish. I don't lame him for wanting to go to Pittsburgh and I really do want him to get the chance, a real chance to win the cup. But if what Chairelli is saying in Boston is true about a deal there being done and them Jarome ixnaying it for the somewhat rosier present in Pttsburgh is a cold slap for Feaster and Friends. I only hope that he did it with the intent of returning with a ring, taking a hometown discount, working with the "retool" and retiring in the Flaming C, as it was meant to be. I'm not trolling here. I have always admired Jarome as being the most complete player of his era. At times I've had my questions about his "leadership" (through the Phaneuf and Regehr quiet riots, for example), and yet that night when Linden retired and Iggy brought the boys out for a farewell handshake, that '04 Cup run where he sometimes literally and figuratively carried us all on his back, those will stand as testaments to his character, integrity and class. Now Fester (sic) looks even more like he's just a "yes" man (and probably is) and any fan who can read knows the crap return on this deal (gawd, I still can't believe they took two UNSIGNED, low-ranked college kids and a late 1st rounder and any of them can SLEEP AT NIGHT!). I really do hope promises were made by The Captain himself to return as mentioned above, to fill the gaps and lead by exemplary example until the "prospects" ( yeesh!) and any new acquisitions round into form Otherwise, well, ouch. As far as the "retool" goes, to coin a phrase,

"furthermore, I think Ken King should be fired".

Avatar
#17 dotfras
March 29 2013, 02:08PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Kent - if you wrote a book, I would read it. Appreciate your writing here on FN!

Gonna miss Iggy in a Flames jersey. Happy to see him in an opportunity to once again challenge for the cup. That whole 2004 Cup run was the most exciting thing I've ever been a part of as a sports fan. I'll be cheering all the way for Iginla, and Pittsburgh.

Avatar
#18 BurningSensation
March 29 2013, 02:25PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@Dean the raven:" But if what Chairelli is saying in Boston is true about a deal there being done and them Jarome ixnaying it for the somewhat rosier present in Pttsburgh is a cold slap for Feaster and Friends."

The deal is only 'done' when Jarome agrees to it. Chiarelli can bark as much as he wants, it was always, always, Jarome's call to make.

I for one think the Pittsburgh deal is actually better than the one on offer from Boston (especially if the Boston pick was conditional as initially reported).

I note that per Hockey Prospects Hanowski and Agostino clock in as better ranked prospects for our system than either Michael Ferland or Lance Bouma. Not blue chippers, but still (this time as per Corey Pronman) better than average prospects.

Avatar
#20 Victoria Flames Fan
March 29 2013, 03:00PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
BurningSensation wrote:

I'm a bit (ok a lot) older than most of the people here, as I was around when the Flames arrived from Atlanta and played at the old Corral.

It was with no small amount of horror that I reacted to the Nieuwendyk trade. We were shipping out a #1 center, in his prime, who had a sterling resume of 50 and 40 goal seasons as well as a Cup. And the return? Some guy picked outside of the top of his draft by the Stars. We were furious.

Then I watched the WJC that year, and discovered that this kid we had traded for was a potential monster. He dominated the WJC with power and skill, and was clearly head and shoulders above everyone else at the tournament. So there was hope.

When he arrived in Calgary to play in the playoff series against Chicago there was a lot of questions about what he could bring to what was still a pretty decent team. He scored goals. He played the body. He was going to be good.

For the next few years we watched as he went from teenager to 20 goal scorer to 30 goal scorer, and as the team was dismantled around him, into the lone bright spot on the club. If he had never achieved a higher level offensively, that would have been OK, as at that time he was our Trevor Linden, a swiss-army knife forward who could play the game at a high level any way you liked. Power, finesse, leader, whatever you needed, he could bring.

It was at this time that rumours began to swirl that Button was going to move him out for Mike Peca (think about that for a moment and try not to throw up - I still can't take Button seriously knowing he considered that deal), but cooler heads prevailed and Iggy stayed.

And then he went supernova. The league was all clutch-grab-trap, and Iginla packed on some extra muscle to improve his game - and became the best powerforward, indeed, the best player, in the game. He was unstoppable. In a dead puck era he was the lone 50 goal sniper. He was robbed of a Hart trophy by a Montreal reporter, but never griped. He was a late addition to the Olympics but he ended up being arguably the most dominant player in the tournament.

The run in 2004 cemented things, he was the real deal.

The 'Shift' (and the Gelinas goal that never was, but should have been), the fight with Lecavalier, the Linden salute, the way he dealt with the media, everything. He was exactly the kind of player that Calgary fans had dreamed of, and he was ours, and what is more, he was classy and articulate in ways Fleury could never be.

After 2005 when the game opened back up, he wasn't ever quite the same. His game was built for the trap era, not a wide-open power play festival, but he adapted again. He slimmed down, shedding muscle for speed. He continued to score 30 a year like clockwork regardless of the quality of his linemates. He persisted. He had won our hearts, but he kept the promises his talent had made.

I am very sad to see him leave, but want nothing but the best for him.

We won't ever see his like again.

Thanks to Kent (et. al.at Flamesnation) and @BurningSensation (I am also one of those old enough to have had season tickets for that first year in the Coral (well, they were my dad's)). I really appreciate those who can translate their passion for the game into articulate prose. While it's fun to zone out and just watch the game with buds, its also important sometimes to reflect more deeply on the phenomenon of hockey and the inspiring stories (like that of Jarome) that have moved so many Canadians. Great job!

Avatar
#21 Fantheoilman
March 29 2013, 03:05PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
1
props

Iggy how I have hated watching you come into our barn for a decade and a half and usually single handedly beat the oil. I watched the cup run and quietly cheered you on. Your memorable Olympics. You are a man of true integrity. On behalf of oiler fans we hope you win the cup and resign with Calgary again next year. Then we can all pretend to not like you as we resume our battle for Alberta.

Avatar
#22 Butters
March 29 2013, 03:12PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

I cheer for the team up North, but Iginla was all class, all the time. Seeing Iggy in anything but a Flames sweater is akin to seeing a picture of Bobby Orr in a Blackhawks jersey-it just won't seem right. Nevertheless, I will cheer for the Pens so Iggy can get that cup. He deserves it.

Avatar
#23 Jibmeister
March 29 2013, 03:15PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
BurningSensation wrote:

I'm a bit (ok a lot) older than most of the people here, as I was around when the Flames arrived from Atlanta and played at the old Corral.

It was with no small amount of horror that I reacted to the Nieuwendyk trade. We were shipping out a #1 center, in his prime, who had a sterling resume of 50 and 40 goal seasons as well as a Cup. And the return? Some guy picked outside of the top of his draft by the Stars. We were furious.

Then I watched the WJC that year, and discovered that this kid we had traded for was a potential monster. He dominated the WJC with power and skill, and was clearly head and shoulders above everyone else at the tournament. So there was hope.

When he arrived in Calgary to play in the playoff series against Chicago there was a lot of questions about what he could bring to what was still a pretty decent team. He scored goals. He played the body. He was going to be good.

For the next few years we watched as he went from teenager to 20 goal scorer to 30 goal scorer, and as the team was dismantled around him, into the lone bright spot on the club. If he had never achieved a higher level offensively, that would have been OK, as at that time he was our Trevor Linden, a swiss-army knife forward who could play the game at a high level any way you liked. Power, finesse, leader, whatever you needed, he could bring.

It was at this time that rumours began to swirl that Button was going to move him out for Mike Peca (think about that for a moment and try not to throw up - I still can't take Button seriously knowing he considered that deal), but cooler heads prevailed and Iggy stayed.

And then he went supernova. The league was all clutch-grab-trap, and Iginla packed on some extra muscle to improve his game - and became the best powerforward, indeed, the best player, in the game. He was unstoppable. In a dead puck era he was the lone 50 goal sniper. He was robbed of a Hart trophy by a Montreal reporter, but never griped. He was a late addition to the Olympics but he ended up being arguably the most dominant player in the tournament.

The run in 2004 cemented things, he was the real deal.

The 'Shift' (and the Gelinas goal that never was, but should have been), the fight with Lecavalier, the Linden salute, the way he dealt with the media, everything. He was exactly the kind of player that Calgary fans had dreamed of, and he was ours, and what is more, he was classy and articulate in ways Fleury could never be.

After 2005 when the game opened back up, he wasn't ever quite the same. His game was built for the trap era, not a wide-open power play festival, but he adapted again. He slimmed down, shedding muscle for speed. He continued to score 30 a year like clockwork regardless of the quality of his linemates. He persisted. He had won our hearts, but he kept the promises his talent had made.

I am very sad to see him leave, but want nothing but the best for him.

We won't ever see his like again.

Couldn't have said it any better.

Avatar
#24 Jeff Lebowski
March 29 2013, 03:44PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Iggy. I think people here will learn the adage, "you don't know what you got til it's gone' first hand.

Consistently the fittest Flame. Consistently the leading scorer. Played all the games. Did you ever see an interview where he was negative? Did you ever hear him throw someone under the bus? What did Regher say about Keenan and what did Jarome say? For that matter, did you ever hear any former team mate or coach or gm say a bad word about Iginla (the only place you did was on forums where 'fans' would rip him about lacking leadership blah blah lies).

Remember how many times Iggy dropped the gloves to defend a teammate? I watched the Guerin fight after Savard got run into the boards.

Remember how he played 02 gold medal game? Remember what Gretzky, Messier, Yzerman, Lemieux, Sakic said and continue to say about him as a player, a leader? I'll take their words over some retarded fan's uneducated opinions on a forum.

Remember when Kobasew left? He wore 12 on his next team(s).

Remember what Ference said after Boston winning the cup and what was going through his mind?

Remember how in 04 after Hatcher had concussed Lombardi with an elbow, Iggy fought him. Fought the biggest guy on the ice.

Remember during 04, if they were going to lose a game, Iggy would pound the crap out some poor schmuck on the other team? Just to let them know what was coming next game.

Remember how in game 7 against the nucks in 04 how he really made the play to end the game (the turn off the boards then the shot)? Remember that breakaway goal he also scored and slammed his stick against the glass?

I remember a game against the Ducks. It was the game Berube chased Freisen around the ice. Anyway, there was like a line brawl at the end of the game (Calgary lost big I think) and Iggy fought some French goon on Anaheim. All this goon did was fight for his career and Iggy took him on and kicked his F*n ass.

How many years was he the sole threat on Calgary? How many years did he have to fight through all the checking, defensive pairings and still be a leading scorer in the league.

He is an ultimate warrior. You don't get guys like this come around very often

It's like Cammy said today (I think paraphrase) You don't get rid of player like Iggy. Ever. (Alfreddson still in Ottawa, Lidstrom in Detroit).

Some people put the blame on Iggy. They are stupid and are wrong. He was an example of what went right. Amid all the crap moves, Iggy was the best move. Now the 30 pick in 2013 draft is going to replace everything Iggy brings to the table? Hopefully that miracle happens.

Iggy was a guy from Alberta. He was just like us. And he was so freaking awesome.

Avatar
#25 Scary Gary
March 29 2013, 06:57PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

I'd like to thank you guys for all the updates and articles that have helped feed my unhealthy obsession; I've thoroughly enjoyed them.

Much appreciated!

Avatar
#26 Sean Bennett
March 29 2013, 07:43PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Let me first state that Iggy was unequivocally a great hockey player, a polite and humble gentleman off the ice, and an all-around good guy. I have so many fond memories of him with the Flames that I wouldn`t even know where to begin.

That said, let`s not mistake him for a selfless and altruistic individual who dedicated himself to the betterment of humanity. He was an athlete who found a great fit in Calgary -a city and community that fell absolutely in love with his personality and skill. However, we also contributed 7 mil a year to his financial well-being - a big reason he stayed. Yes, I know that he would have got the same elsewhere, but he was obviously most comfortable playing in Calgary and Alberta in general where he was regarded as a hockey god (outside of Edmonton, of course).

However, I can`t help but have a greater quixotic regard for the Alfredssons and Doans of the sports world. Now Doan may yet pursue a career elsewhere if the Coyotes are moved, but both individuals evince a desire to win with the city and fans that have supported them their entire careers -not just to win anywhere and with anybody. In other words, Iginla is well within his rights to pursue the Cup with a contender, but I have greater respect for those athletes that evince the desire to sink and swim with the team they have come to be identified with, rather than jump ship in the twilight of their careers so they can ride the coat-tails of a team deemed to have the greatest odds to win the ultimate prize.

Maybe, like I said above, I`m hopelessly quixotic, but it is my opinion that winning isn`t everything, it`s who you win with.

Truly, my greatest regret is that Iggy didn`t win the Cup with Calgary. He devoted the lion`s share of his career in trying to do so, and would have preferred it. Now he`s willing to go anywhere and in any capacity to win. It`s a purely selfish goal that I as a fan of the Flames cannot relate to. He`s a good guy and I hope does win because of that fact, but my loyalty and affection to Iggy stemmed from the fact that he was a Flame, not because he`s a great athlete. Hell, Crosby is a great athlete and I couldn`t give a rat`s ass if he won or lost, unless he is playing for Canada.

To each his own selfish pursuit. For me it will always be the Flames, win or lose; for Iggy, it`s the chance to win a cup, with or without the Flames. It was an amicable break-up, but a break-up indeed.

Sorry for the long-winded response.

cheers, fellow Flames Fans....

Avatar
#27 petemaherrock
March 29 2013, 08:14PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Is there any chance Iggy returns to the Flames maybe not next year or the next but 3 or 4 down the road , just can't fathom the idea of him retiring in another sweater/city. please win your cup soon Iggy and get back here ASAP

Avatar
#28 Scary Gary
March 29 2013, 08:39PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Sean Bennett wrote:

Let me first state that Iggy was unequivocally a great hockey player, a polite and humble gentleman off the ice, and an all-around good guy. I have so many fond memories of him with the Flames that I wouldn`t even know where to begin.

That said, let`s not mistake him for a selfless and altruistic individual who dedicated himself to the betterment of humanity. He was an athlete who found a great fit in Calgary -a city and community that fell absolutely in love with his personality and skill. However, we also contributed 7 mil a year to his financial well-being - a big reason he stayed. Yes, I know that he would have got the same elsewhere, but he was obviously most comfortable playing in Calgary and Alberta in general where he was regarded as a hockey god (outside of Edmonton, of course).

However, I can`t help but have a greater quixotic regard for the Alfredssons and Doans of the sports world. Now Doan may yet pursue a career elsewhere if the Coyotes are moved, but both individuals evince a desire to win with the city and fans that have supported them their entire careers -not just to win anywhere and with anybody. In other words, Iginla is well within his rights to pursue the Cup with a contender, but I have greater respect for those athletes that evince the desire to sink and swim with the team they have come to be identified with, rather than jump ship in the twilight of their careers so they can ride the coat-tails of a team deemed to have the greatest odds to win the ultimate prize.

Maybe, like I said above, I`m hopelessly quixotic, but it is my opinion that winning isn`t everything, it`s who you win with.

Truly, my greatest regret is that Iggy didn`t win the Cup with Calgary. He devoted the lion`s share of his career in trying to do so, and would have preferred it. Now he`s willing to go anywhere and in any capacity to win. It`s a purely selfish goal that I as a fan of the Flames cannot relate to. He`s a good guy and I hope does win because of that fact, but my loyalty and affection to Iggy stemmed from the fact that he was a Flame, not because he`s a great athlete. Hell, Crosby is a great athlete and I couldn`t give a rat`s ass if he won or lost, unless he is playing for Canada.

To each his own selfish pursuit. For me it will always be the Flames, win or lose; for Iggy, it`s the chance to win a cup, with or without the Flames. It was an amicable break-up, but a break-up indeed.

Sorry for the long-winded response.

cheers, fellow Flames Fans....

A vast and quixotic comment but I appreciate your point of view!

Avatar
#29 Captain Ron
March 30 2013, 12:15AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Iggy was an absolute gem for the Flames and their fans. A born and raised Albertan. With a little good fortune he could have had that cup win right here on at least one occasion. I sure hope he realizes his dream of hoisting that cup somewhere.

My son and I had the pleasure of meeting him in person a few times at the golf tournaments and he didn't disappoint.

Like Jeff Lebowski said he was freaking awesome and guys like him don't come around very often.

Good luck in the playoffs Jarome. We hope you win that prize you have been dreaming of all your life.

Avatar
#30 Captain Ron
March 30 2013, 12:15AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Iggy was an absolute gem for the Flames and their fans. A born and raised Albertan. With a little good fortune he could have had that cup win right here on at least one occasion. I sure hope he realizes his dream of hoisting that cup somewhere.

My son and I had the pleasure of meeting him in person a few times at the golf tournaments and he didn't disappoint.

Like Jeff Lebowski said he was freaking awesome and guys like him don't come around very often.

Good luck in the playoffs Jarome. We hope you win that prize you have been dreaming of all your life.

Avatar
#31 Captain Ron
March 30 2013, 12:26AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
BurningSensation wrote:

I'm a bit (ok a lot) older than most of the people here, as I was around when the Flames arrived from Atlanta and played at the old Corral.

It was with no small amount of horror that I reacted to the Nieuwendyk trade. We were shipping out a #1 center, in his prime, who had a sterling resume of 50 and 40 goal seasons as well as a Cup. And the return? Some guy picked outside of the top of his draft by the Stars. We were furious.

Then I watched the WJC that year, and discovered that this kid we had traded for was a potential monster. He dominated the WJC with power and skill, and was clearly head and shoulders above everyone else at the tournament. So there was hope.

When he arrived in Calgary to play in the playoff series against Chicago there was a lot of questions about what he could bring to what was still a pretty decent team. He scored goals. He played the body. He was going to be good.

For the next few years we watched as he went from teenager to 20 goal scorer to 30 goal scorer, and as the team was dismantled around him, into the lone bright spot on the club. If he had never achieved a higher level offensively, that would have been OK, as at that time he was our Trevor Linden, a swiss-army knife forward who could play the game at a high level any way you liked. Power, finesse, leader, whatever you needed, he could bring.

It was at this time that rumours began to swirl that Button was going to move him out for Mike Peca (think about that for a moment and try not to throw up - I still can't take Button seriously knowing he considered that deal), but cooler heads prevailed and Iggy stayed.

And then he went supernova. The league was all clutch-grab-trap, and Iginla packed on some extra muscle to improve his game - and became the best powerforward, indeed, the best player, in the game. He was unstoppable. In a dead puck era he was the lone 50 goal sniper. He was robbed of a Hart trophy by a Montreal reporter, but never griped. He was a late addition to the Olympics but he ended up being arguably the most dominant player in the tournament.

The run in 2004 cemented things, he was the real deal.

The 'Shift' (and the Gelinas goal that never was, but should have been), the fight with Lecavalier, the Linden salute, the way he dealt with the media, everything. He was exactly the kind of player that Calgary fans had dreamed of, and he was ours, and what is more, he was classy and articulate in ways Fleury could never be.

After 2005 when the game opened back up, he wasn't ever quite the same. His game was built for the trap era, not a wide-open power play festival, but he adapted again. He slimmed down, shedding muscle for speed. He continued to score 30 a year like clockwork regardless of the quality of his linemates. He persisted. He had won our hearts, but he kept the promises his talent had made.

I am very sad to see him leave, but want nothing but the best for him.

We won't ever see his like again.

Just a terrific comment from you.

And yeah I agree with you on Button. I personally can't stand the man. He will never be a GM in the NHL again. Hard to believe he ever was one in the first place.

Avatar
#32 dean the raven
March 30 2013, 04:18AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

@BurningSensation

The big problem I have with these two kids is that they are both unsigned. We have until August to sign one. What if he sees the press about the Flames and decides to re-enter the draft? A roster player is still a roster player. A conditional pick is still a pick. An unsigned prospect is exactly that.

Avatar
#34 Captain Ron
March 30 2013, 12:23PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props
Kent Wilson wrote:

Hanowski is 22 so he'd just become a free agent rather than enter the draft I believe. He doesn't have the leverage of a Justin Schultz, so I don't see that happening. The Flames will be the most motivated team in the league to ink him since he was part of the Iginla deal, so I don't see much risk there.

And I would like to add that they will look at the Flames and realize that they could have a good chance to become an everyday NHL player on this team moving forward.

Avatar
#35 kabuchi
March 31 2013, 11:42AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
Props
0
props

Jarome is the classiest player in the NHL period. Believe me, he will be missed here in Vancouver also.And it is not for what he did when Linden retired ,but for his courtesy to reporters , his fans and the like.I think I have just become a Penguins fan.

Comments are closed for this article.