A little while ago while I was watching the guys from Pardon the Interruption discuss LeBron James and his NBA Mount Rushmore. That segment got me thinking about which 4 players would be on the Calgary Flames Mount Rushmore. On the small chance someone out there doesn’t understand the reference, I’m talking about which 4 players are the best in franchise history and deserve to have their heads chiseled into the side of a mountain. Simple enough so let’s get to my list:
Jarome Iginla- Anyone who knows me will know I am a huge Jarome Iginla fan. Before he was traded to Pittsburgh in 2012-2013, I used to wonder if I was a bigger Flames fan or a bigger Iginla fan and if I would still cheer for the Flames after he was gone. With that being said, Iginla is without a doubt the best player in Flames history and I would think most people would agree on that. He is the all time franchise leader in games played, goals and points and is second in assists. He arguably single-handedly carried the team to the Stanley Cup finals in 2004 and was one of most dominant players in the NHL from 2000 to 2008. He is hands down #1 on the list.
Miikka Kiprusoff- Even though Mike Vernon is the only goalie to back stop the Flames to a Stanley Cup win, Miikka Kiprusoff was only one win away from doing the same thing and is the only Flames goalie to win a Vezina Trophy.. The guy played outstanding in his tenure with the Flames and often times he was the only reason why they stayed in games. Jay Feaster once said, “If we were to trade [Kiprusoff], is there a position lower than 30th? If we were to trade [Kiprusoff], we'd be sub-30, whatever that number is in a 30-team league.” That’s completely true in my mind. While Iginla was the heart and soul of this team, Kipper was the backbone and team MVP for many years at the same time as Iginla played in Calgary.
Al MacInnis- “Chopper” played in Calgary for 13 years and is mostly remembered for having one of the hardest shot in the NHL. His shot clocked in at 100 MPH and was so hard he broke the end boards and goalie Mike Liut’s mask. This was in a day before players used their magic composite sticks they use today. Besides that Al MacInnis led the Flames to their only Stanley Cup win in 1989, leading the team in scoring with 31 points and winning the Conn Smythe trophy as playoff MVP. He is the best defenceman in Flames history and was named to the NHL 1st or 2nd All-Star team 5 times while playing in Calgary. Al was also the first player to be inducted into the Forever a Flame program in 2012.
Theoren Fleury- The last spot on the list is the most debatable in my mind but Fleury takes it for me. He was THE franchise player during the mid to late 90’s, which was right when I became a Flames fan. His OT goal and double knee slide celebration against the Oilers in the 1991 playoffs is one of the highlights that you will always remember (Click here to watch). He represented Canada on numerous occasions and played in 6 All-Star games while playing in Calgary. Before my man Jarome took over the team lead in all time goals and points, Theo was the leader in both categories. What is amazing to me is he did all that, plus added a physical element to his game, as a player who was smaller than Martin St. Louis of the Tampa Bay Lightning! Let’s not forget his memorable comeback attempt in 2009 where he scored 4 points in 4 exhibition games and had most Flames fans hoping he would make the team.
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