Calgary Flames fans were saddened to hear reports Sunday that team captain Jarome Iginla wants to be traded to one of four top NHL teams, but also understanding that the time might be right for such a move.
“It was heartbreaking but I wasn’t surprised,” said LaToya Wilson in response to numerous reports, citing unnamed sources, that Iginla has submitted a list to the Flames organization of teams to which he’d be willing to be traded.
Those teams include the Pittsburgh Penguins, Boston Bruins, Chicago Blackhawks and Los Angeles Kings.
The Calgary Flames would not confirm or deny the reports Sunday.
“As we have said all along, we will not be commenting on Jarome’s contract status,” media relations manager Sean Kelso told Metro.
Kent Wilson of FlamesNations.ca believes the reports are likely accurate.
“I would think 95-per-cent it’s probably true,” he said.
Trading Iginla before his contract expires this summer would make sense for the struggling Flames franchise, Wilson added, “especially with three or four high-end teams like that potentially getting into a bidding war.”
Derrick Newman, who writes for TheCheckingLine.com, said it will be hard for fans to say goodbye but most will understand if Iginla does decide to go.
“Iginla has kind of earned the right to decide his own fate,” he said. “He’s 35 years old, about to turn 36, and I think it’s only fair to let him go and try to win a cup.”
Long-time fan Jamie Barber said it will be hard to see Iginla in another jersey but fans need to recognize “he deserves better than what the Flames are able to give him right now.”
“Flames will always be my No. 1, but Iggy is my favourite player regardless where he plays,” Barber said.
“I hope one day he can come back to the Flames as a player or management in the future.”