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Iginla excited to be joining Penguins

by Aaron Vickers

Jarome Iginla came within one game of capturing the Stanley Cup in 2004.

He's hoping a change of location can finish the job in 2013.

Waiving his no-trade clause to join the Pittsburgh Penguins, a refreshed Iginla is motivated at the opportunity to join the likes of Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin in their bid to hoist Lord Stanley's prize.

"Pittsburgh is a great organization and they are really rolling," he said. "They have the two best players in the world in Crosby and Malkin. The firepower and the group and the chemistry they have, I look forward to just going and let me know where I can help out or fit in and do my best to play hard and help win."

Calgary has missed the Stanley Cup Playoffs for the past three years and with a fourth absence on the horizon, the Flames and their captain decided to part Wednesday night.

The thought of winning didn't take long to build excitement in the 35-year-old.

"Every year that goes by, I think it does become more and more important for all players," Iginla said. "[When] you first break into the League, you just want to establish yourself and want to get into the League and earn a spot, and then you're trying to earn a regular spot, then get on the power play and win games.

"Each year that goes by, even more so, you want to win. That's what you're made to do and why you play. Each year that goes by, you definitely feel a bit more urgency there."

Flexing the no-trade clause in his contract, the former Calgary captain was able to control his destination. He chose Pittsburgh.

It wasn't a tough decision, Iginla admitted.

“When it came down to the choice that I had, it is really hard to pass up an opportunity to play on a team with Sid and Malkin, and the roll that they are on and the success that they've had," he said. “As a player, I wanted that opportunity and I'm thrilled and thankful they've given me that opportunity."

He isn't alone in his quest to win the Cup.

Flames fans have already adopted the Penguins on Iginla's influence, hoping the 16-year Calgary resident can finish what he was unable to do in 2004.

"I understand there's a new journey and I appreciate that the fans do wish me well to try to win," Iginla said. "Pittsburgh is a great opportunity and a great experience all around, and getting to be a part of their team and their locker room and learn new things. I do appreciate the fans, when they do say that they hope I win it.

"I do too."

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