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Martin St. Louis: The ultimate complementary player

Aug 4, 2012, 3:36 PM EDT

Tampa Bay Lightning v Winnipeg Jets Getty Images

When you look at the career of Martin St. Louis, one thing stands out amongst everything else: Consistency.

Since 2002-03 he’s had 70+ points in each season except for one (05-06). During Tampa’s Stanley Cup title season in 2004, he led the NHL in points with 95 and won the Hart Trophy as the league MVP. He was a finalist for MVP in 2011 after putting up 99 points and leading the Lightning to the Eastern Conference finals.

With all those individual accolades and statistics, he’s been the guy that’s helped both Vinny Lecavalier and Steve Stamkos reach stardom.

In 2006-07 when Lecavalier had a career-high 52 goals and 108 points, it was St. Louis there riding shotgun with him with 102 points of his own. While Stamkos was busy scoring 60 goals last season, again it was St. Louis along for the ride with 74 points many of which came in helping Stamkos reach a milestone number. That ability to complement another’s play so well is rare.

The Lightning’s success over the years has always been seemingly on and off, but it’s been St. Louis that’s been the rock. Not bad for a guy who went undrafted out of the University of Vermont and whom the Calgary Flames gave up on after two seasons.

  1. danphipps01 - Aug 4, 2012 at 4:01 PM

    And to think. The Flames could’ve run a line of St. Louis, Savard and Iginla. Instead, they handed Tampa the best player in Lightning franchise history for loose change.

    • victoriavallie - Aug 11, 2012 at 7:51 AM

      and we thank them for it

  2. bluesrawesome - Aug 4, 2012 at 4:49 PM

    I really like St.louis he is such a good play maker and to me he’s one of the best at seeing the ice and knowing where all the players are. I think St.Louis is like 38 hopefully he dosn’t retire soon. He’s going to be hard to relpace and the Lightning will have to find a good playmaker to play on Stamkos’s wing to set him up.

    • danphipps01 - Aug 4, 2012 at 9:38 PM

      Only a few guys of his calibre come to mind. Henrik Sedin, Crosby, Giroux, Thornton (though honestly, he’s a bit over the hill at this point), Getzlaf on a good year… not much else coming to mind, nothing that compares to Marty at least.

      • victoriavallie - Aug 11, 2012 at 7:53 AM

        leave crysby out of that equation and i agree-MSL has not now,nor will he ever be known or accused of being a whining crying diving prima donna.

  3. capsfan19 - Aug 4, 2012 at 9:06 PM

    The man is a class act. Would kill to have on my team.

  4. gotampabay52 - Aug 4, 2012 at 10:18 PM

    Thank you Flames for St. Louis and the for kicking your ass for the cup. Go Bolts next season will be fun Best GM in the NHL is also the best thing for our team

  5. withseidelinn - Aug 5, 2012 at 1:02 AM

    This guy is just one of a kind. You can’t replace a player like this. Amazing consistency offensively and the type of player that makes everybody around him good. Lightning are going to take a big hit when he retires in a couple years.

  6. lsxphotog - Aug 5, 2012 at 11:25 PM

    The term “Diamond in the Rough” comes to mind with St. Louis. Marty had to climb from the gutters to even earn his spot on an NHL roster. Now, he’s one of the most dedicated professional athletes I’ve ever seen. He’s consistent because of dedication and the fact he’s tougher than nails.

  7. greenmtnboy31 - Aug 7, 2012 at 9:04 AM

    Marty fully deserves all the credit, accolades and praise for a stellar career. What he doesn’t deserve is the back handed slap in the face with a line like “it was St. Louis along for the ride”. He’s never been along for the ride, he’s been the conductor moving the train and in 2004 that meant all the way to hoisting the Stanley Cup.

    He’s flown under the radar a bit and isn’t always given the recognition he’s earned, which is similar to another UVM alum; John LeClair. LeClair practically won the Stanley Cup finals for the Habs back in ’93, when he scored two overtime game winning goals on the road in LA. Only one other player in NHL history has done that. LeClair also didn’t get the recognition he deserved when he was playing in Philly with some guy named Lindros. Lindros always got the headlines, but it was Johnny who become the first and still is the only US born player with three straight 50 goal seasons. LeClair was the big stud on that Legion of Doom line and in that case it was Lindros who was along for the ride.

    Now if UVM could get rid of theknucklehead they have coaching now and get that team back to the prominance it once had, many of us would be much happier.

    Congratulations Marty, you’ve earned the praise.

    • victoriavallie - Aug 11, 2012 at 7:57 AM

      thing is,marty is such a true gentleman that he doesnt care if he gets the recognition or not. he is ALL about the team,always has been. he is perfectly happy “flying under the radar” as it were if it means team success.

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