ATLANTA - Jarome Iginla of the Calgary Flames will handle the captain's duties for the Western Conference at Sunday's NHL all-star game while Vincent Lecavalier of the Tampa Bay Lightning will wear the C for the East.
The two players have been friends and foes on the ice. They have played together for Team Canada and were on opposite benches in the 2004 Stanley Cup final, when the Lightning beat the Flames in seven games. They also dropped the gloves in that series in a rare scrap between arguably the two best players on the ice.
''I got a lot of rib shots that kind of hurt,'' Lecavalier said with a smile as the two players met with the media Saturday at Philips Arena.
''But I think obviously we were both battling to win the Cup, so we did whatever we had to do for our team. Once it's over, it's over. You can tell that after every series, guys shake hands.
''And a lot of the guys in this league are friends and I think it's just respect.''
''Hockey I think is definitely unique like that,'' he said. ''It's something that you go out there and when you're on the ice you're competing, you're battling.''
And the victor of that tussle?
''I don't know,'' Lecavalier said.
''It was a draw,'' Iginla added as both players laughed.