You remember that steady chatter — the noise that the Calgary Flames absolutely must track down a No. 1 pivot for Jarome Iginla.

The notion makes left-winger Alex Tanguay laugh these days. It really does.

"It's funny how everybody always mentioned that Jarome needed a centreman," said Tanguay, grinning. "I think Jarome needs somebody to give him the puck. I tried this year to be that guy."

Tried. Succeeded.

Tanguay, despite not being a centre, fills that need — to a T. Puck distribution is his mandate.

"Look at our season," Tanguay said. "If we would have played well in October and November, probably Jarome is the No. 1 scorer in the league right now. It took a little bit at the start to build the chemistry. The first few months, we were searching for each other too much — forcing the issue too much. But at the end we just played. I have very good chemistry with Jarome. He's a very easy guy to play with. I know exactly what he's going to do, where he likes the puck.

"It's been fun playing with him. A lot of fun."

Whether that joy continues is the burning issue. Maybe the hottest one at Flames headquarters. Because, minutes after entertaining the media masses Monday at the Scotiabank Saddledome, Tanguay marched into the parking lot, armed with a contract that expires in a matter of weeks.

Meaning the club's big brains, with their bloated payroll, need to decide if No. 40 can remain part of the picture.

"I don't know if they want me back or not," said Tanguay, who, in the off-season, had signed a one-year deal for $1.7 million. "Who knows? Maybe they're interested, maybe they're not. We haven't been getting into any kinds of negotiations as of yet."

Not officially, perhaps. But in recent days Tanguay has talked with acting general manager Jay Feaster. A couple of the owners, too.