Jarome Iginla's Slow Start Should Have Calgary Flames Fans Concerned

By Jonathan Katje
Jarome Iginla
Jerome Miron – USA TODAY Sports

Four games into the 2013 season, the Calgary Flames are dead last in the Western Conference with a 1-2-1 record. The team ranks 27th in goals allowed, and 27th in penalty kill percentage. The Flames are scoring an average of almost three goals per game and have the league’s seventh best power play, despite getting little scoring contribution from their star players so far.

Longtime Calgary captain Jarome Iginla has not yet scored a goal, but does have three assists. Mike Cammalleri hasn’t scored either and has two assists. Offseason acquisition Jiri Hudler has only played in one game so far this season due to bereavement leave. This has left Lee Stempniak (three goals), Curtis Glencross (three goals), Alex Tanguay (two goals) and youngster Mikael Backlund (two goals) to carry the team offensively.

Iginla is in the last year of his contract with the Flames, and is set to be an unrestricted free agent at season’s end. The winger turns 36 this summer and likely doesn’t have many more years left. If he wants to win a Stanley Cup before he retires he may have to leave Calgary to do it. Right now, his slow start is not doing him or the team any favors. He scored 32 goals last season, which was only the second time in the last 10 seasons he had scored that few. He has not missed a regular season game in over five seasons, a good sign for him and the Flames in this lockout-shortened season. Iginla will have every chance to help get the Flames offense clicking this season, and if they hope to make the playoff he needs to do it soon. Calgary’s next game is Thursday night when they host the Colorado Avalanche.

Jonathan Katje is a hockey writer for Rant Sports. Follow him on Twitter @JKatje or add him to you network on Google.

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