|Well, at least it isn't the Canucks...|
Almost exactly one year ago, I was extremely happy when Iginla corrected the error of his earlier flip-flop decision and signed with the Boston Bruins. As poor a fit as he was in Pittsburgh, he was ultimately used correctly in Boston. I was really hoping they would find a way to keep him as a Bruin, but considering the deal he signed with the Avalanche ($16 million over 3 years) it wasn't going to happen. If Boston had made a move or two to free up cap space, and if Iginla was willing to take a bit of a cut to stay on a very good team - say, maybe $3 million a season for two or three years - I think he might still be a Bruin.
So, my question is this: is Iginla in it for the money, or does he truly believe that Colorado is within three years of winning the Stanley Cup? Sadly, it appears to me that the answer is probably green. Yes, Duchene, Landeskog and MacKinnon are all top-notch players; so, even with the departure of Stastny, clearly Colorado has an above-average forward group. However, Iggy might have a hard time keeping up with those speedy young legs...most of his goals will probably be on the power play, or ripping it in from the top of the circles as he trails the play. But unless the Avs get their hands on a top-tier defenseman (Erik Johnson is currently their best, by far), I do not consider them a contender. And in net, Semyon Varlamov is locked-in at $5.9 million until 2018-19...despite his fine 2013-14 season, I'm not sold on him being a Cup-winning calibre goalie. In the foreseeable future, Colorado will certainly have a tough time emerging from the Western Conference - I still think Los Angeles, Anaheim and Chicago are better, and St. Louis and Dallas are getting stronger.
Finally, it won't be as easy for me to cheer for Iggy's Avalanche as it was to cheer for Iggy's Bruins. Joe Sakic and Ray Bourque aside, I wasn't even all that happy to see them win their Cups (for example, I never liked Claude Lemieux); and, how could a Flames and/or Bruins fan cheer for Patrick Roy?