Iginla chooses Sid the Kid and the Pens over Bruins
PITTSBURGH – Jarome Iginla had his choice of destinations when the Calgary Flames star was given freedom to explore a trade.Only one of those destinations allowed Iginla to play with Sidney Crosby on hockey’s hottest team.Iginla called the opportunity to chase a Stanley Cup with the player he called “the best in the world” as the biggest reason the six-time All-Star agreed to a trade to Pittsburgh on Wednesday night.
Pittsburgh acquired the 35-year-old, six-time All Star forward from the Flames in exchange for prospects and a first-round draft pick. Pittsburgh sent the Flames the rights to college players Kenneth Agostino and Ben Hanowski as well as the Penguins’ first pick in the 2013 draft for the league’s fifth-leading active scorer.Iginla, who has nine goals and 13 assists this season, has 525 goals and 570 assists in 1,219 career regular-season games in 16 seasons, all with Calgary. He has 28 goals and 21 assists in 54 career playoff games and has played for Canada in three Olympics. Iginla assisted on Crosby’s gold-medal winning goal for Team Canada in the 2010 Vancouver Games.
And the news kept getting better for the Penguins, too. Less than 24 hours after they traded for Iginla, reigning NHL MVP Evgeni Malkin returned to the lineup Thursday night against Winnipeg after missing nine games with an upper-body injury.
To make room for Malkin, the Penguins sent rookie winger Beau Bennett to Wilkes Barre-Scranton of the AHL.
Malkin has five goals and 19 assists in 24 games this season. He sat out four games earlier this season because of a concussion.
BOSTON – The Boston Bruins believed they had made a deal to obtain Iginla before the Flames traded their captain to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
Bruins general manager Peter Chiarelli said he was told by Flames general manager Jay Feaster at about noon Wednesday that he had “won the Jarome Iginla sweepstakes.”But Chiarelli said Thursday that shortly before midnight Feaster told him Iginla had chosen to go to Pittsburgh. Iginla had a no-trade clause that allowed him to choose his destination.
Donovan ready to return to the red, white and blue
WASHINGTON – Landon Donovan hopes to regain his place on the United States’ national team.
Back with the Los Angeles Galaxy after a sabbatical of nearly four months, the 31-year-old midfielder said Thursday he wants to help the U.S. qualify for next year’s World Cup.A member of three World Cup teams and the Americans’ career scoring leader, Donovan has been watching the national team from a distance.
The U.S. is 1-1-1 in the final round of qualifying from North and Central America and the Caribbean after Tuesday’s 0-0 tie at Mexico. Donovan hasn’t appeared in a game since Dec. 1, when L.A. won its second consecutive MLS title. He took the extended break to “get the enjoyment back.”
Red Bulls acquire Akpan from Colorado for a pick
HARRISON, N.J. – The New York Red Bulls acquired former Harvard forward Andre Akpan from the Colorado Rapids on Thursday for a conditional pick in the 2015 draft.
The 25-year-old Akpan, from Grand Prairie, Texas, played one game this year for Colorado, appearing as a substitute March 2 at FC Dallas. He had three goals in 15 games last season and has four goals in 29 career games, all with Colorado.
Also on Thursday:
Rapids defender Drew Moor was suspended an additional game by the MLS disciplinary committee for the red card he received in Sunday’s game against the L.A. Galaxy.Rapids defender Diego Calderon is expected to miss four to five months after undergoing microfracture surgery on his right knee.