After years of speculation, of the Calgary Flames falling short of the playoffs, Jarome Iginla is now a member of the Pittsburgh Penguins.
The Flames have traded away their superstar and captain rather than risk losing him for nothing this summer when his contract is scheduled to expire.
So, with one icon gone and the team’s postseason hopes slim at best, is it time for the Calgary Flames to finally fully embrace a rebuilding mentality?
“I don’t want to use the word ‘rebuild,’ ” said Flames GM Jay Feaster in a Calgary Sun report.
“We want to bring some more young players into this organization. There’s a gap from the 18- and 19-year-olds to the 27-, 28-, 29-year-olds”
If the Flames want to continue trading for young assets, they certainly have more players teams would be interested in. For example, defenseman Jay Bouwmeester would likely fetch a high price. He won’t be an unrestricted free agent until the summer of 2014, but the Flames could trade him now to avoid having to make another 11th hour decision like they did with Iginla.
36-year-old goaltender Miikka Kiprusoff is another interesting possibility, but a report suggested that he might refuse to play if traded.
Only time will tell if the Iginla trade represents a philosophic shift for the Flames or if they simply picked what they saw as the best option out of a field of bad ones.