Calgary Flames: The Jarome Iginla Trade – Four Years Later

CALGARY, CANADA - APRIL 7: Jarome Iginla
CALGARY, CANADA - APRIL 7: Jarome Iginla /

It’s been four years since the longest-serving captain, all-time point and goal scorer, and face of the franchise for the Calgary Flames was dealt to the Pittsburgh Penguins for two prospects and a draft pick. Let’s see how the deal turned out for both sides.

On March 28th 2013, the Calgary Flames officially signaled to the NHL that they were rebuilding by trading the best player in their history, Jarome Iginla. When hearing it was Pittsburgh, Many Flames fans were hoping to get someone like James Neal or Olli Maatta to help kickstart the rebuild. Instead it was two college prospects and a first-round pick. At the time, while not ecstatic and certainly very skeptical, Flames nation was not completely discouraged given that all three pieces were under the age of 22. In the four years that followed, much has happened. Let’s take a look at how the trade turned out for all parties involved.


LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 2: Jarome Iginla
LOS ANGELES, CA – APRIL 2: Jarome Iginla /

For #12 (/88), he continued to shine for the Boston Bruins, Colorado Avalanche and LA Kings after leaving the Flames. From the 2013-14 season to 15-16′, Jarome scored 25+ goals and led Boston and Colorado in goals for two of those seasons. Not bad for an old man. This past year however, Jarome suffered a decline, only scoring 14 goals and notching 27 points in 80 games. Now 40, Iginla looks to be on his way out of the league being without a contract with only 8 weeks until the start of the season. Sadly, it seems unlikely that Iginla gets his well-deserved and desired Stanley Cup.

Calgary Flames
Calgary Flames /

Calgary Flames

The Flames

The Flames have made the playoffs in two of the last four seasons since trading their all-time best player. However, other than the fresh start that was given to the team after his departure, their recent postseason appearances were in no part thanks to the pieces acquired in the deal. Ben Hanowski and Kenny Agostino in no way helped the team at all and are both long-gone, and their first-round pick received by the Penguins, Morgan Klimchuk, hasn’t fared much better. It seems as though the 22 year-old Calgary native will not even see the light of day in the NHL. While it’s disappointing that Iginla was given away for virtually nothing, they seem to be on the right track anyways.

The Penguins

Pittsburgh only made it to round 2 in 2013 with Iginla. He played admirably but couldn’t get them over the hump. The Pens suffered some heartbreaking playoff losses before their Stanley Cup victories in 2016 and 2017. They might be the league’s next dynasty. Not much more to be said.

The Almost Trade to Boston

Before Iginla’s trade to Pittsburgh, it was reported that Jarome was heading to Massachusetts, not Pennsylvania. The Flames would have received Matt Bartkowski, Alexander Khokhlachev and a first-rounder from the Bruins. This would have most likely amounted to the same result as the trade to the Penguins did, given that neither one of those players amounted to anything in the NHL. Ironically, Bartkowski ended up playing for Calgary anyways, which is a fun little twist.

MONTREAL, QC – MAY 6: Jarome Iginla
MONTREAL, QC – MAY 6: Jarome Iginla /

In another ironic turn of events, after being knocked out by Boston in the Eastern Conference Finals in 2013, Iginla signed with the Bruins on July 1 and scored 30 goals with them the following year.

Actually, in another fun turn of events (well, depends on how you define the word fun), but Iginla that season had a no-trade clause before leaving Calgary. However, he waived that for just four teams: The Penguins (obviously), the Bruins, the Kings, and… the Chicago Blackhawks.

Remember who won the cup in 2013? Yeah, “fun” was the wrong word to use.

Related Story: Iginla Snubbed From NHL 100 List

The Last Chance

If Jarome doesn’t decide to retire, his last chance at playing NHL hockey this upcoming season is a pro tryout contract. If Iggy does decide to hang up the skates, it’s been a hell of a career for him. I can’t help but say it, the only thing missing on his resume is a cup, and he has a great chance of getting it with Calgary. A swan song, last shot, full-circle end to his illustrious NHL career. A dream ending.

Next: Throwback Thursday: Dion Phaneuf/Matt Stajan Trade

It’s probably not going to happen, but a Flames fan can dream.