There is one constant when it comes to any hockey player who plays at the highest level, they all sweat, and bleed for the right to lift Lord Stanley’s Cup. It is something that even the ones who aren’t fortunate enough to play in the NHL dream of, even though it is not a possibility.
For years, Jarome Iginla has been one of the game’s premiere power forward. He has built a résumé that will land him in the Hall of Fame in the first year he is eligible, but one thing eludes him. The very thing that most players would give up every single personal accomplishment to be able to call themselves – Stanley Cup Champion.
Iginla nearly won it in 2004 when his Calgary Flames lost to the Tampa Bay Lighting in seven games and since then he saw his Flames take a steady decline to the basement of the Western Conference. Still thirsty to get his name on the Cup, Iglina left the only hockey home he had ever known for the Pittsburgh Penguins, agreeing to waive his no-trade clause for a chance to win the Cup. After falling short at the Eastern Conference Finals, Iglina decided to pull a Marian Hossa-type move and sign with the team that defeated his former team in the playoffs and sign with the Boston Bruins.
Iginla will fill the hole left by Nathan Horton’s departure to Columbus and look to provide the Bruins with that missing piece to get them back to the Stanley Cup Final – only to win it this time around. Does the addition of Iginla make the Bruins the favorite to make it back to the Cup Final? And if the Bruins do fall short, what then for ‘Iggy’? Will he call it quits on his Hall of Fame career and ride off into the sunset? Or is that fire burning enough to take a few more cracks at winning the one thing that has eluded him his entire career?
Another Former Penguins In Last Go-Around?
Unlike Iginla, the 41-year old winger from the Czech Republic, Jaromir Jagr, has already captured hockey’s highest honor – twice as a matter of fact. He won the Cup back-to-back years with the Penguins in 1991 and ‘92, and like Iginla, Jagr has plenty of the personal achievements to ensure his enshrinement into the Hockey Hall of Fame but Jagr still continues to play the sports.
After splitting last season with the Dallas Stars and the Boston Bruins, Jagr finds himself in New Jersey, playing for the Devils on an one-year deal. Jagr struggled to find many offers for him to stay in North America, so if he does not play well with the Devils, he may be forced to at least give up hockey in the NHL and if he wishes to continue his career, do so in Europe.
Jagr at his prime, was one of the most dominant players to play the game, but will be mostly remembered as Mario Lemieux’s sidekick as well as his exit out of Pittsburgh.
If this is the last year for both player’s, you can pencil in two slots when they become Hall of Fame eligible.
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