The Calgary Flames find themselves in the same position the Toronto Maple Leafs did a few years ago. They’ve got some big names on the bench, but not enough results to make it to the playoffs. The big names can bring in assets, but do you trade them?Mats Sundin wouldn’t let the Leafs trade him, and he left the Leafs with nothing.
The Flames face the same position with Jarome Iginla and Mikka Kiprusoff. Both could fetch nice bounties on the open market, but Iggy has a no-trade contract, and Kipper is virtually all that kept the Flames in their games this season.
Do the Flames rebuild or reload? That depends how badly everyone co-operates to make it happen.
It would be great if the two big guys could leave and bring the team some cans of food for the cupboard. Iggy could go for 3 years, and then return for a final season once the team is competitive again. If Kipper left, it would be for good, but Irving is waiting in the wings.
I’ll take some heat for cheering for an arch-rival of the Flames for the next 2-8 weeks, but it’s okay to cheer for the Canucks. It’s okay to cheer for the Coyotes. It’s okay to cheer for the Blues.
When the playoffs come, and your favourite team is no longer playing, be a hockey fan first.