Former Flames captain Jarome Iginla to announce retirement from NHL

Jarome Iginla during his tenure as captain of the Calgary Flames. (Jeff McIntosh/CP)

Longtime Calgary Flames captain Jarome Iginla is officially ready to hang up his skates, with a retirement announcement set for Monday in Calgary.

Iginla played 20 NHL seasons, 16 with the Flames.

The St. Albert, Alta., native served as the Flames’ captain for nine seasons — the 18th player to wear the ‘C’ in franchise history — right up until he was dealt to the Pittsburgh Penguins in March 2013. A team leader both on and off the ice and a fan favourite over the course of his Calgary career, Iginla remains the Flames’ all-time leader in goals (525), points (1,095) and games played (1,219). He also held the franchise’s scoring lead for 11 consecutive seasons, which was the longest such streak in NHL history.

Iginla’s pro hockey career began when the Dallas Stars called his name with the 11th overall pick in 1995, but he was dealt to the Flames six months later and made his NHL debut with a two-game, two-point appearance during the 1996 Stanley Cup Playoffs.

Iginla, 41, finished his career with stints in Pittsburgh, Boston, Colorado and Los Angeles, playing his final NHL game on April 9, 2017 with the Kings. Though he expressed hope to continue his career in 2017-18 — he skated with the AHL’s Providence Bruins following his recovery from hip surgery — he wasn’t able to find the right fit to make an NHL return.

In 1,554 career NHL regular season games, the power forward registered 625 goals and 675 assists for an even 1,300 career points over his 20-year career, reaching the 50-goal mark twice in his career and earning the Art Ross Trophy as the NHL’s points leader in 2001-02. He also added 37 goals and 68 points in 81 career playoff games, including a thrilling run to the Stanley Cup Final with the Flames in 2004 — the first year of his captaincy.

The six-time NHL All-Star and future Hall of Famer also found success on the international stage, suiting up for Team Canada at the Olympic Games three times. He helped Canada win Olympic gold twice, first in 2002 and again in 2010 when he served up a perfect pass to Sidney Crosby — the “Iggy!” heard ’round the hockey world — in overtime of the gold medal game against Team USA.

Iginla’s official retirement press conference will be hosted by the Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome at 10:30 a.m. MST on July 30.

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