Unsurprisingly, reports have Jarome Iginla once more contemplating a trade out of Calgary. This has been a news story every April, given the Flames have found themselves out of the playoffs for the past three years running. But with only a year left on his contract and the Flames finally looking like they’ll embrace a rebuild, this is probably it for the aging power forward. It’s hard to wrap your head around him in another uniform, but it’s probably going to happen.
At $7MM a year, there won’t be many teams able to take on Iginla’s salary, and unless Calgary is looking to do a “halfie” rebuild—part veterans and part younger players in return—there will be few suitors. Those with the cap space don’t often have the financial means. Those with the means and the space may not have the picks or prospects.
Ottawa could be one of those few teams in the sweet spot. They have the cap space, even after signing Karlsson to whatever he’s gonna get. One thinks they have the money, considering the playoff and All-Star revenue from this year, the buy-outs coming off the books this season, and the fact that Alfie’s salary decreases by about three million bucks next year. They have the prospects to send back in exchange, and a low enough first round pick not to miss it too much.
But is he even any good these days? The numbers aren’t in dispute, even as Iginla has aged: he’s scored more than 30 goals and more than 60 points every single season since 1999-2000, and often playing without a number one centerman. He’s one season removed from a 43-43-86 season. And, let’s all say it again: only one season left on that deal.
The X-factor here is Alfredsson. Would the likelihood of a trade for Iginla increase or decrease if Alfie retires this year? They’re both right wingers, and so Iginla could step in and fill the vacuum of skill, tenacity, and leadership if he’s gone. If he’s not, it may not make sense to have so much money loaded up on the right wing, but then again maybe Iginla would be more likely to accept a trade to Ottawa with the Captain around.
Everyone’s offseason crush is going to be Zach Parise, and I absolutely think Ottawa should be in on that mad bidding war, but I know the odds are slim. What say you? In the absence of younger impact players, would you be willing to part with the picks and prospects to trade for Jarome Iginla?