Kipper Officially Retires

Kent Wilson
September 09 2013 10:10AM

Mikka Kiprusoff

- pic via Terry Dobbins

It's been a long wait, but today Miikka Kiprusoff officially announced he will be retiring from NHL hockey. The 37 year old had a rough end to his career with Calgary, stumbling badly during the lock-out shortened season and then putting the kibosh on a trade deadline swap that would have seen him go to the Toronto Maple Leafs.

Not that the rocky conclusion to his days in Calgary will leave any kind of lasting impression on his legace as a Flame. For a time, he was the best goalie in the game and may in fact be recognized as the best puck stopper to ever wear the Flaming C, despite never managing to win a cup. Kipper's reputation outstripped his performance level during some of his final seasons, but he was one of the primary reasons the club was considered a contender when he was at his peak.

We'll publish a more complete requiem for Kipper later this week. For now, thanks for everything Miikka and good luck.

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 Subz
September 09 2013, 10:22AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
+1
14
props

Glad to see him play as a flame, brought me back to be a die hard flames fan, after young guns era.

- Always a kipper fan

Avatar
#2 FireOnIce
September 09 2013, 10:23AM
Trash it!
44
trashes
+1
3
props

Is it better to burn out or to fade away?

Thanks to Kipper for his service, but at the end, he was an oversized Finnish anchor, weighing down the future of the organization. And his exit was rather undignified with all the mind games, "will he?" or "won't he?".

I wonder if the Flames have any plans on bringing Kipper into the fold as a staff member. Goalie coach? Goalie scout? Vodka expert?

Avatar
#3 aloudoun
September 09 2013, 10:23AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
+1
26
props

Thank you Kipper! Pretty soon #34 will be hanging along side #12 at the Dome.

Avatar
#4 aloudoun
September 09 2013, 10:28AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
4
props

And on that note we are now 29th in the league in terms of payroll according to Cap Geek, with the Islanders being only 2 million below us.

Avatar
#5 schevvy
September 09 2013, 10:29AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
21
props

Kipper had a 3 season stretch from 2004-2007 where he was the best goalie in the league. He, even more so than Jarome, is why the Flames made their run in 2004. If he didn't get hurt that year he would've won the Vezina. Always had a flair for the dramatic.

A Vezina Trophy, A 3-time Vezina Trophy finalist, the best goalie in Flames history. All for a 2nd round pick. Unreal.

Thank you Kipper

Avatar
#6 BurningSensation
September 09 2013, 10:30AM
Trash it!
5
trashes
+1
7
props

Vernon deserves to be in the HOF.

Kipper was better.

Avatar
#7 Captain Ron
September 09 2013, 10:40AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
6
props

Thanks Kipper. You were awesome. It was a pleasure watching you bring fans out of their seats on many occasions. Best Flames Goalie ever.

Avatar
#8 backburner
September 09 2013, 10:58AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
+1
8
props

One of the most exciting high-lite reel puck stopping goalies of all time.

Avatar
#9 ChinookArch
September 09 2013, 11:00AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
7
props

Roll out the video and accolades:

My personal what a save moment. Against SJ and his face down on the ice and a puck is kick out of mid air with bottom of his skate blade as it was about to go in".

http://video.flames.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=197578

Avatar
#10 BurningSensation
September 09 2013, 11:22AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
+1
5
props
ChinookArch wrote:

Roll out the video and accolades:

My personal what a save moment. Against SJ and his face down on the ice and a puck is kick out of mid air with bottom of his skate blade as it was about to go in".

http://video.flames.nhl.com/videocenter/console?id=197578

The Scorpion!

Avatar
#11 Baalzamon
September 09 2013, 11:27AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
1
props

This is the definitive save in my book. Just superhuman.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=evAQiz0XpEY

Avatar
#12 Craig
September 09 2013, 11:48AM
Trash it!
3
trashes
+1
12
props

#tears

I remember when Kipper was the bane of the Canucks, all the fans would say: "You only beat us because of Kiprusoff!" and a lot of the times that was true. Thank you Kipper for being a Canuck killer.

Avatar
#13 Jeff In Lethbridge
September 09 2013, 11:51AM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
1
props

I'd be willing t Show Master Kipper my secret fly fishing holes... but only Kipper.

Avatar
#14 Kevin R
September 09 2013, 12:01PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
11
props

Iggy was great but Kipper was the one that led us out of darkness. He was our saviour. I remember saves in that Vanc series in 2004 that defied anything I have ever seen. I don't care what anyone says, but with the right team, he still has it. Kipper just seemed timeless. With Iggy & Kipper in their primes, we should have had at least 1 Cup. They were both that good! Time marches on but my memories will all always stand still. Gilles Godspeed please! Officially today there is a hole in the Flames world.

Avatar
#15 SmellOfVictory
September 09 2013, 12:43PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
+1
2
props

Officially the end of an era, in my opinion. He and Iggy were the only true core players from the old team; even Regehr was expendable.

Avatar
#16 Ed Wailin'
September 09 2013, 12:44PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
+1
5
props

I can't wait till all the uncensored kipper stories start coming out now!

Avatar
#17 the forgotten man
September 09 2013, 01:02PM
Trash it!
5
trashes
+1
4
props

Vernon - 1A and Kipper - 1B...maybe just sentimental or been a Flames Fan for too many years to count, but Kipper never had to go up against the 80s Oilers like Vernon did on a regular basis both season and playoffs. The 2000s Vancouver Canucks could not hold the jockstrap of the 80s Oilers - pains me to always say it but that Oilers era Team is the best that ever was and probably the best the NHL will ever see with the economics and structure of the Game. Embarrasment that Vernon not in HOF and Kipper should be there too.

Avatar
#18 FireOnIce
September 09 2013, 01:18PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
1
props

@Ed Wailin'

"He liked to drink lots of vodka, smoked before/during/after all games and practices, and he was generally a grumpy Finn who played up his accent because he didn't want to talk to reporters."

I think that sums it up. There's nothing that would shock me with Kipper. Vodka in the water bottle? E-cigarette in the catching glove? Strippers stuffed in his locker? Pfsh.

Avatar
#19 FireOnIce
September 09 2013, 01:23PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
5
props

This is a bit random, but there's not really a better place for it.

According to Dreger, Taylor Hall has been practicing as a C the last 6 weeks. Pretty good too, apparently. Not so sure how I feel about that because it just means he gets better in both ends. Scares me a bit.

Avatar
#20 Baalzamon
September 09 2013, 01:41PM
Trash it!
3
trashes
+1
3
props

@the forgotten man

Not to split hairs about pointless topics, but the 70's Habs were the best team ever. Inarguable.

Avatar
#21 RKD
September 09 2013, 01:59PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
2
props

Congrats on a fantastic career, thank for the memories. Wish it would have ended on a more positive note.

To me Kipper is the greatest Flames goalie all time, not just based on stats. A lot of people give the nod to Vernon because he won the Stanley Cup. The reality is the team in front of Vernon was of an all-star caliber. The team was full of elite forwards and defencemen. Who did Kipper have in front of him in that 2004 Cup run, an elite power forward named Jarome Iginla. No other truly elite guys on that roster.

If you put Vernon on the 2004 team, I don't think he takes you to the finals. Moments that stand out is the Scorpion save and that series against Detroit in which we were outshot like 255-125. He was stopping 40 plus shots a night in a playoff series.

Avatar
#22 beloch
September 09 2013, 02:08PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
2
props

@FireOnIce

It just means the Oilers have bugger-all for first-line centers with the Nuge still out. Perhaps it will improve Hall, but having so little depth is definitely going to hold the Oilers back this season.

As for the man who helped make public flashing a part of Calgary's culture by being uncommonly excellent at keeping a little piece of rubber out of a big net... So long and thanks for all he saves Kipper! Hopefully you won't be a stranger around town the next time the red mile gets hedonistic!

Avatar
#23 T&A4Flames
September 09 2013, 03:21PM
Trash it!
2
trashes
+1
2
props

Good luck Kipper. Thanks for all the incredible and lasting memories.

Best

Goalie

Ever!!!

Avatar
#24 bookofloob
September 09 2013, 04:06PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
+1
2
props

I love you Kipper :'(

Avatar
#25 Tony
September 09 2013, 05:21PM
Trash it!
1
trashes
+1
0
props
BurningSensation wrote:

The Scorpion!

Avatar
#26 44stampede
September 09 2013, 07:07PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

Does this mean there may be an investigation on cap circumvention?

Avatar
#27 redricardo
September 09 2013, 07:09PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

So with the inevitable accolades the Kipper will have coming his way, for being one of the all time great Flames...

Is there anything that we can do as fans to pressure the organization into ending their "Forever a Flame" thing? It's beyond lame.

I would much rather see a jersey hanging in the rafters one day... you know... like how a normal team would do it

Avatar
#28 redricardo
September 09 2013, 07:10PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

@44stampede

Nope. Cap circumvention only applies in cases of 7 year contracts or more. Or something like that. Either way, Elliot Friedman answered that question on Twitter earlier today.

Avatar
#29 Burnward
September 09 2013, 08:55PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

Olkoon hirsimökki pysyy lämpimänä ... ja savukkeiden runsaasti. Se oli ilo.

Avatar
#30 Reidja
September 09 2013, 10:47PM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
3
props

Hello darkness my old friend.

What is that one enduring vision of Miikka Kiprusoff that we will all remember?

A man, having been scored upon, removing his mask and looking on, not looking in. Ready for the next play. Ready for the next season. Ready for what comes next.

Ultimately his NHL career was shaped by his extraordinary work for our team - a team for which he toiled. A team which, almost miraculously, peaked in his breakout season of 2004. But goodness, he did not peak. Kipper played the most consistently elite hockey of any Calgary Flame player since the glory days.

We all owe him a debt, and he asks for none. The sound of silence.

Thank you Kipper.

JR

Avatar
#31 hank williams
September 10 2013, 08:39AM
Trash it!
0
trashes
+1
0
props

Thanks Kipper for all the great memories. Im so lonesome I could cryyy! This could be our new Flames cheer for the foreseeable future.

Comments are closed for this article.