Welcome back to The Sunday Census. Throughout the week, The Win Column will be posing topical and intriguing polls on Twitter (@wincolumnblog) to gauge the fan-base’s stance on pressing issues. Want to make sure your opinion is taken into effect? Vote in the polls, start a debate, and propose alternative suggestions on the polls!
In case you hadn’t heard, the Flames retired Jarome Iginla‘s jersey last night at the Saddldome in what was an emotional night for all Flames fans. So of course, this week’s Sunday Census is primarily dominated by the former captain. Starting off with the positives, we wanted to see which career moment from Iginla was the fan favourite.
It was very hard to pick just four things for the list, as once you start going through the paces of remembering key moments, it grows exponentially. We settled on four main ones which we think would be the contenders: “The Shift”, “The Golden Assist”, his fight with Vincent Lecavalier, and the 500th goal.
The 500th goal didn’t get a ton of love from fans on this poll, and it’s not overly surprising based on the other options. Although he would go on to score his 600th a few seasons later with the Colorado Avalanche, his 500th was a massive deal at the time. From the dancing Iggy video countdown displayed on the Jumbotron as he approached the mark, to the overall anticipation from fans, the 500th goal was a long time coming. Unfortunately it might have been the ugliest goal scored in his career, with an attempted pass ending up in the back of the net. Regardless, as amazing of a moment, it only snagged 8% of the vote from fans.
Next up was an absolute even split down the middle at 28%, with both moments coming during the 2004 playoff run. In fact, both memories came during the same series with the Tampa Bay Lightning: “The Shift” and his bout with Lecavalier. It’s almost not surprising to see such an even vote, as both are equally important. “The Shift” was just the perfect combination of pure hard work, determination, and will to win. The image of a helmet-less Jarome Iginla controlling pressure in the offensive zone is exactly the type of play you expected from the Flames’ captain during a playoff run.
The fight was another story, but equally as impressive. In 2004 the game was a bit different, but still the thought of the two best players on each team going at it in the Stanley Cup finals was even unheard of at the time. Emotions were running high, but you better believe Iginla has zero second thoughts about going at it with Lecavalier. Both moments defined the cup run for the team, but also Iginla’s career. Unfortunately there is just one more moment that tops them all.
Everyone knows where they were when Sidney Crosby scored “The Golden Goal”. That memory will be forever engraved into my memory, and that of many others. But what I will remember most about that goal is the scream of “Iggy” from Crosby moments before he scored. It’s simple really; no Iginla, no goal. To complete the perfect backhand pass while falling to the ground is more challenging than we give him credit for. For how important the moment is for so many people, it’s not surprising at all to see “The Golden Assist” top this poll.
As if last night didn’t tug at the heart strings enough, we are going to do all over again. Our first poll wanted to focus on the favorite moment, but the next one was centered around the moment that pulls at your heart strings the most. It’s entirely possible that last night could be at the top of this list now, but we were only working with past moments at the time.
Only receiving 6% of the vote was Iginla’s Hart Trophy snub in the 2001-02 season. I think this wasn’t able to generate more votes because the moment is more infuriating than it is emotional. It’s still widely debated that Iginla deserved the trophy more than Jose Theodore did that season. With 52 goals and 96 points, Iginla was the class of the league and easily the MVP. Of course, the voters thought differently and awarded the Montreal Canadiens goaltender the honour instead. It was unfortunate, but then again we all know who the MVP that season was and frankly that is all that matters right?
Next up in a shocking result was Iginla’s trade to PIT in the 2012-2013 season. I am surprised that this didn’t garner more votes, perhaps due to the other options, but this was a soul crushing time to be a Calgary Flames fan. Sure he was on his way to potentially having a better shot at a Stanley Cup, but to see the epitome of the franchise be traded was a soul crushing moment. We all knew it was coming, but that didn’t make the day any easier.
The runner up in the poll was Iginla’s first game back in Calgary. Now a member of the Boston Bruins, Iginla was welcomed back like royalty. From the constant standing ovation, to the victory lap at the end of the game with his new teammates egging him on, the entire game was beyond memorable. Everyone left that arena completely happy, even after the Flames lost the game, due to the fact everyone got to see #12 once again in the Saddledome. The moment was lost over the years when he returned to play, but just like last night, his first game back pulled at the heartstrings enormously.
Of course just like the last poll, there is one moment that takes the cake. We will keep it brief as to not bring up old harbored memories, but the 2004 Stanley Cup run easily is the hardest to swallow for Iginla fans. We now know that this was his closest shot a cup, Iginla would only play in the Finals once. Although he made his mark the entire playoff run, nothing stings more than to see the look on his face moments after game 7. He will always be a winner in our mind, but to not have his name on the Stanley Cup is one of the hardest things to swallow.
Oh yes, and it was in.
Changing focus to the 2018-19 team, the Flames put together quite the successful week. Although it may seem like a distant memory right now, the 2019 Trade Deadline was in fact only six short days ago. Here at The Win Column we have already done a dive into what we thought of the Flames moves, but we wanted to gauge the fans opinion on the matter.
Just to recap, the Flames only made one move last Monday. They acquired Oscar Fantenberg from the LA Kings for conditional fourth round selection in 2020. Meanwhile, the other Western Conference contending teams all made significant moves.
Surprisingly, only 10% of voters were displeased with the results, or lack thereof. I would think these voters were looking at the other acquisitions made and wondered “why not us?”. While the rest of the teams improved in the west, the Flames remained stagnant. Although the one move was made, these voters were not pleased to see the Flames stand still and not bulk up for an extended run.
With 22% of the vote, fans who loved the deadline by the Flames let it be known. These fans most likely love the current make up of the team and also loved that the team retained all of it’s young talented prospects. Of course while there were plenty of rumors, these fans believe in the current roster and were glad to see just a depth defenseman move made.
Just edging out the last option, 23% of voters thought there could have been something more. I tend to agree with this option the most, as I look at Gustav Nyquist‘s trade to San Jose as something the Flames should have done. An upgrade to their forward group, but at no detrimental cost to their current lineup. Of course I believe the Flames also were playing a game of chicken, one that they eventually lost.
That being said, with 45% of the vote, most fans seem to be indifferent about the whole ordeal. Sure they could have made a move, or they could have done nothing. I think that this larger group of fans are just pleased to see playoff hockey coming up in Calgary, and don’t care too much about the moves that were, and weren’t, made.
Want to be a part of the conversation next time around? Follow us on Twitter @wincolumnblog and be sure to keep a look out for our polls throughout the week.