One player, 1554 games, 625 goals, 675 assists, 1300 points, 1040 penalty minutes, two Olympic Gold Medals, two Rocket Richards, and an Art Ross across a 21-year career with the Colorado Avalanche, Los Angeles Kings, Boston Bruins, Pittsburgh Penguins, and another team I forgot the name of.
That is what all-time Avalanche Great Jarome Iginla is putting the lid on as he has announced that he will retire from hockey officially during a press conference on July 30th in Calgary. Not sure why they picked Calgary, Iggy was born in Edmonton!
Okay, that’s it for the jokes. Maybe.
Easily the greatest Calgary Flames player of all time, Jarome Iginla, is callin it a career. It was an honor to have him in our organization for the three seasons that we did, even if we get him the Cup he so dearly deserves.
Jarome Iginla is hanging up the skates. Although we didn’t get to do a lot with him, he was an exceptional person to work with. pic.twitter.com/dwib0RpW8w— Ryan Boulding (@rboulding) July 25, 2018
Even at 37-years-old, Iginla led the 2014-15 Avalanche in goals with 29. He hit goal number 600 (the 19th player all-time to do so) on January 4th, 2016 with the Flames. He also reached game number 1500 with the Avs, only 18 players in NHL history have ever played long enough to hit that mark (19 if you include Mike Modano’s 1499 games).
Iginla was a pioneer in every respect; as a leader on and off the ice, a prolific talent with the stick as well as his hands, and a hero for kids of color growing up all around the continent. He will be a first-ballot Hall of Famer, without a doubt.
Okay that is all I feel we are allowed to say, Iggy’s a Flame first, second, and third. In that spirit, here is what Flames nation is saying on the day of Iggy’s retirement announcement.
“In a sense, I grew up there,’’ says Iginla. “I started playing for the Flames at 19 but even in minor hockey I remember traveling to Calgary for tournaments, from St. Albert, and I imagined playing in the Saddledome.
”It’s been a fun adventure, for my family and I. Some great cities, great people. To be back in Alberta, though, will feel like home.”
The comments section (I know) of Flames Nation has a great list of well-wishes and hopes that Iggy will sign a one-day contract with the team and get his #12 retired as soon as possible.
Ladies and gentlemen, get those tissues handy. A native of St. Albert, Alberta, Iginla had a tremendous junior career with the Kamloops Blazers where he won a pair of Memorial Cups. Originally drafted by the Dallas Stars in the 1995 NHL Draft, he was traded to the Flames in exchange for holdout forward Joe Nieuwendyk in December 1995. He went pro with the Flames in the spring of 1996 and never looked back.
During his days as the net-filling fan favourite at the Saddledome, Iginla was a two-time winner of the Maurice ‘Rocket’ Richard Trophy as the NHL’s leading marksman. His hardware collection also includes the Art Ross Trophy, Lester B. Pearson Award, King Clancy Memorial Trophy, NHL Foundation Player Award, Mark Messier Leadership Award and two Olympic gold medals.
Jarome Iginla Ranks in #Flames Franchise History:— Sportsnet Stats (@SNstats) July 25, 2018
GP - 1,219 (1st)
G - 525 (1st)
A - 570 (2nd)
PTS - 1,095 (1st)
PPG - 161 (1st)
SHG - 13 (3rd)
GWG - 83 (1st)
And of course, the fans:
@nenshi can you rename several streets/roads after Jarome Iginla?— Mike Pfeil (@mikeFAIL) July 25, 2018
Jarome Iginla Way
Jarome Arthur-Leigh Adekunle Tij Junior Elvis Iginla Blvd.
And then a road for each of his middle names?
Jarome Iginla was one of the reasons I fell in love with hockey. He gave me, as a Calgarian, many reasons to cheer and be a fan 1/2— Sydney (@sydthechick) July 25, 2018
Jarome Iginla is the reason I fell in love with the Flames #ThankYouIggy— John MacKinnon (@johnmackinnon24) July 25, 2018
Team Canada fans are welcome as well, I guess.
Happy retirement, Iggy!