We've all heard the rumors.
Due to the Calgary Flames' consistent state of mediocrity, multiple rumors have circulated that the team is looking to trade superstar right wing Jarome Iginla.
Elliot Friedman of CBC reported about a month ago that although Iginla has a no movement clause, he would waive it under certain circumstances. In order for him to be traded, the club would have to make it public that the trade was their idea and not Iginla's.
It would make sense that Flames GM Darryl Sutter might want to trade the team's captain. His performance last year was less than impressive, and so far he is following the same trend in the 2010-11 season.
The same could be said about the Flames as a whole. The team missed the playoffs last year for the first time since the 2002-03 season, which should have been a wake up call. But so far Calgary is yet to answer the bell, and are currently sitting at an unattractive 13th spot in the Western Conference.
A trade for Iginla would be a high-risk, high-reward kind of deal. One must wonder if Iginla has lost the "super" aspect from his superstar name, or if a change of scenery is all he needs to revive his former self.
Only a handful of clubs could take the chance on this aging all-star. In return for him, Calgary would probably want a relatively cheap roster player and couple of draft picks or prospects.
Here are 10 teams I think could be possible destinations for Jarome Iginla.
There is an outside chance at best that Jarome Iginla could be traded to the Ottawa Senators, but it's very unlikely.
The near impenetrable wall that is the NHL salary cap stands in the way of a trade between these two teams. With the Sens only holding approximately $1 million in cap space, they would need to trade away at least $6 million worth of assets in order to make room for Jarome Iginla's inflated $7 million contract.
(All numbers courtesy of capgeek.com)
Milan Michalek and Chris Kelly's names would like pop up in trade talks simply because of the cap factor. As far as prospects go, center Jim O'Brien, defenseman Patrick Wiercioch or even goaltender Robin Lehner could be involved.
Jarome Iginla could possibly be on his way to Broadway to play with he Rangers. However, this one is a long shot for a couple of reasons.
A trade to the Rangers would be a big change for Iggy. One of the bigger issues with this trade would likely be getting him to waive his NMC.
Another issue is the cap. The Rangers only have about $1.5 million dollars in cap space, which means Iginla wouldn't fit in. New York would have to send back a package worth at least $5.5 million to make up for Iginla.
A package like that could include players like Valcav Prospal, Matt Gilroy, and possibly even Ryan Callahan. Callahan is the unlikeliest of that group to be traded, but multiple news sources have reported that the Rangers are in fact shopping Gilroy.
This one is a longshot. So far this year, the Penguins are underachieving and could really use Iggy's services. A large group of their forwards aren't producing and the team is already short on right wingers.
The issue is, a deal for Iginla would be almost impossible. The Penguins would have to send a package to Calgary of approximately the same monetary value, because both teams are near the cap. They already have a bunch of money tied up in their top players, and acquiring another big-name player with a big salary wouldn't make much sense.
A player who's name would likely pop up in trade talks is Eric Tangradi. Tangradi, 21, is one of the Penguins' top forward prospects and would likely be expendable if Iginla came to town. The 6'4", 221 pound left winger could probably jump straight into a starting role in Calgary. A Penguin draft pick or two would likely be thrown around as well.
A player such as Chris Kunitz would probably also be suggested.
Dare I even suggest this?
Sending the captain of the Calgary Flames to their divisional and provincial rival sounds completely nuts, but it just might make sense. Hear me out here.
The Oilers are a very young team that is struggling greatly. Everybody knows that.
Iginla is a veteran who can score goals, play with grit and do the dirty work. Those are three things that could greatly help the team out of the NHL's basement.
Iginla may even waive his NMC to go to Edmonton. The Oilers have a very bright future, and he may recognize that.
Iggy's experience would be welcomed with open arms, as experience is one of the Oilers weak points.
Andrew Cogliano or Alexandre Giroux are possible suitors to be traded to the Flames. Giroux is an NHL ready player who has been waiting for his big break for awhile. Perhaps that big break will come in Calgary!
I'm sure the Flames wouldn't say "no" to one of the Oilers' draft picks as well.
Cogliano is a small, speedy center (won 2009 fastest skater competition) with a load of potential. He has seen a drop in production ever since his first year, but many people in the hockey industry think he is primed for a breakout year.
You had to know that the Toronto Maple Leafs would be one of the teams to surface in these Iginla rumors. It's no secret that the team is struggling immensely (seven straight losses as of this article), and desperately needs offensive help.
It's common knowledge that the Leafs aren't the deepest team at the forward position. With Phil Kessel as their only legitimate scorer, a trade for Iginla would benefit the team greatly. Their main priority is widely believed to be a number one center, but a physical winger who can provide 30 goals would be welcome in Toronto, where they are desperate for offense. His leadership would also shine on a relatively young team.
The Leafs have a couple of cheap, valuable assets that could be possible suitors to be shipped to Calgary. Nikolai Kulemin would likely be a target. A solid two-way winger with 25 goal potential, Kulemin has chemistry with current Flame Niklas Hagman.
Prospects Jerry D'Amigo (high potential forward), Korbinian Holzer (stay-at-home defensman with some NHL time) and James Reimer (goaltender with loads of AHL seasoning, almost ready for NHL action) are all players who could be on their way out.
However, there are some reasons why a trade between these two teams would be questionable. As mentioned above, the Leafs are first and foremost looking for a number one center. Why would Leafs GM Brian Burke want to waste his better assets in acquiring an aging winger, when their real need is a man to center Phil Kessel on the first line?
Ok, so I realize putting the Flames on this list is kind of cheating. But hey, what if he's not traded?
Iginla staying in Calgary is a genuine possibility. He's their captain and leader.
Keeping Iginla would mean the Flames would have to find some other way to boost themselves from the depths of mediocrity. Whether they make a move within the system or make another trade, the team needs to do something.
Keeping Iginla means keeping your only strong right winger. The Flames are short on right wings, so this keeps the team from getting any thinner in that department.
St. Louis seems like a smart place for Iginla to be traded. The Blues are officially a Cup contender, and we all know how much Iggy would like to win a Cup before retirement. They're set up very well for the future with a solid defensive and offensive core.
They also have a couple of assets who would become expendable if an Iginla trade was imminent.
The club could send Brad Boyes, another player who may simply need a change of scenery to return to his former self, and a couple of prospects to the Flames. St. Louis has a relatively large amount of goaltending prospects, so one of them could be shipped out.
Calgary would like some cap room, so Boyes' $4 million salary for Iginla's $7 million would make sense.
The Blues currently hold the fourth place in the Western Conference, so acquiring Iginla isn't necessarily because they need any help. Necessarily.
Offensive stud T.J. Oshie fractured his ankle in a game on November 10th, which will likely provide offensive woes for the Blues. GM Doug Armstrong said that the surgery was successful, but they will re-evaluate him in three months.
That is three months without one of their top scorers. The Iginla trade makes a lot more sense now, doesn't it?
The Dallas Stars seem like a very likely suitor for the Flames' superstar. With over eight million dollars in cap space and a dangerously thin group of right wingers, a deal between these two teams seems to work.
The Stars are currently just below a playoff spot, and adding Iginla might be the final push they need to return to the playoff picture.
Dallas has an abundance of talented left wingers, so one of them could be expendable. Sophomore Jamie Benn and maybe even James Neal are two wingers who might be targeted.
Benn plus a couple of prospects and a pick seems like a decent package for Iggy.
A deal between the Buffalo Sabres and the Calgary Flames involving Iginla makes a lot of sense. The Sabres are underachieving and could greatly use a physical presence such as Iginla. His offensive instincts would help a Sabre team that sits at 22nd in goals per game.
The reason this deal makes so much sense lies in goaltending. Sure, the Flames have Miikka Kiprusoff under contract through 2013-14, but there is another factor to consider. Kipper is already 34, and the team would probably love some stability in goal just in case.
That is where Buffalo goaltender Jhonas Enroth comes into play. Since the team won't be moving Ryan Miller anytime soon, Enroth has become the expendable goalie. He has proved that he is almost capable of a starting job, and with Kiprusoff as a mentor, Enroth should develop into the future goaltender for the Calgary Flames.
Nobody is asking Enroth to jump into a starting job. In fact, a starting job in Calgary would likely be three or four years away. But as Kiprusoff ages, Enroth would be the perfect goaltender to slowly take the position of number one goaltender.
The Los Angeles Kings are by far the team with the best qualifications to trade for Jarome Iginla.
A trade between these two teams makes sense. The Kings are on the rise in the West, getting stronger each year. Yes, they are off to a great start, but the acquisition of Iggy would only make them better. His veteran presence and offensive ability would be welcomed with open arms.
The Kings have plenty of assets that they could part ways with if Jarome Iginla came to town. As far as roster players go, Wayne Simmonds or Brayden Schenn might be possible targets.
Although a long shot, the Flames might even target forward Justin Williams, who is off to a great start and is currently leading the Kings in scoring.
Looking at prospects, defensemen Colton Teubert and Tomas Hickey's name pop up. Forward Marc-Andre Cliche's might even catch the eye of Sutter.
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