Jarome Iginla's Leadership should never be a debate in Calgary

Christopher D. Pike | October 3, 2010 
Iginla has won on every level except the biggest stage in hockey. The Stanley Cup has eluded Jarome Iginla his entire career. If you are a Calgary fan you might believe he should have this accomplishment as well. The past has been written and the future of Calgary Flames hockey still has one of the greatest leaders in NHL history. With a Mark Messier Leadership Award in 2009, Iginla is respected throughout the NHL.
As the Flames leader and Captain Jarome Iginla showed why he is a classy leader by his willingness to take the blame for the team's disappointments last season. If the Flames thought trading Iginla was the answer, Iginla would be willing to waive his no trade clause to help the Flames rebuild. Iginla had no problems with Calgary fans being upset with his performance last season. He will take the blame because he is a true leader, on and off the ice. Like a true leader he is willing to step in the cross hairs of any criticism directed towards his teammates. Iginla is not a vocal leader but would rather talk to his teammates one on one while showing his true leadership once the puck drops.
Iginla has shown the city of Calgary nothing but respect throughout his career. A career that has seen a young kid grow into a leader and a leader that has become part of the heart of Calgary. What should never be questioned is Jarome Iginla's character and his will to win every battle.  His smile can light up a city and his leadership can still bring glory to the Flames faithful. The sports world has a short memory but we should never forget the impact of a great leader. The Calgary Flames organization never wanted to trade Jarome Iginla.
After the disappointment of missing the playoffs last season the Calgary Flames had many questions to be answered. The question that surprised many fans in Calgary was the possible departure of a great leader and face of the franchise. Could Jarome Iginla be leaving the city of Calgary? Many Calgarians were quick to put Iginla on the infamous chopping block in Calgary. After the Flames missed the playoffs for the first time in 7 years, Flames fans needed answers. The question of trading one of the classiest leaders in hockey was laughable and should have never been discussed on Calgary Soil.
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The media that surrounds this hockey crazed city continued to fuel the fire of trade rumors. It was a fire that should never have been started in Calgary but will now be the fuel to spark a Flame with everything to prove. How can you rationalize trading your most prolific scorer when your team finished at the bottom of almost every offensive category. Iginla is always willing to take the blame but the whole organization should share in the disappointments of last season. Without surrounding Iginla with the right talent his skills will not translate into victories. Stanley Cups are not won with one player but achieved through team chemistry on and off the ice.
Iginla did not have his best season last year. With only 32 goals and 69 points it was one of his worst seasons as a professional. For average players this would have been a dream season. However when you have the hopes and dreams of an entire city resting on your shoulders these numbers are unacceptable. It takes a team to win and one player should never have to shoulder the blame of a losing season or the problems of any organization. Sometimes the best players have to answer the questions surrounding his team and Jarome is always willing to answer his critics with class and respect.
His charity work in Calgary is only a side note for some hockey fans but it shows his true character and his love for the city of Calgary.  As a new season approaches all Flames fans should take a closer look at themselves and who they want to represent their City. Jarome Iginla is not ready to hang up his skates just yet and Calgary should never be willing to give up on one of its greatest leaders.

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