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Poll: Is Martin St. Louis on a Hall of Fame pace?

Aug 5, 2013, 11:13 PM EST

martinstlouisgetty Getty Images

The Tampa Bay Lightning have experienced some severe highs and lows in the last decade or so, but they’ve always been able to rely on Martin St. Louis. Even if he’s often overshadowed and under-hyped.

At 38, it’s likely that the small star’s best days are behind him. At least, that’s the conventional wisdom, yet with the 2013 Art Ross Trophy in his back pocket, he might have a few more prolific seasons in him.

It all begs the question, then: is St. Louis generating a Hall of Fame caliber career?

Some arguments for St. Louis

  • He’s taken the Hart Trophy once, the Art Ross twice, won a Stanley Cup and captured three Lady Byng trophies.
  • St. Louis should finish his career with well over 1,000 points. He currently has 912 in 979 games.
  • The sprite-like star has been huge in the playoffs, collecting 68 points in 63 career postseason contests.
  • He’s been remarkably durable, as well. St. Louis played every game in 2013, and appeared in all 82 regular season games from 2006-07 to 2010-11, missing five in 2011-12. You never know when it comes to injuries, but that indicates that he’ll be able to stay on the ice and continue to rack up points.
  • He has the great back story of being an undrafted free agent turned MVP.

A few counterpoints

  • Few view him as one of the absolute best players in the NHL, at least if they’re limited to just a handful of choices.
  • His presence on Canada’s 2014 Olympic squad is uncertain, fair or not.
  • While the Lightning won a Cup and experienced a few deep runs, they’ve also missed the playoffs by a mile multiple times.

It’s possible that St. Louis could play quite a few more seasons, but even so, it’s entertaining to ponder his Hall of Fame credentials. Vote in the poll below and feel free to elaborate on your reasoning in the comments.

  1. Stiller43 - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:22 PM

    No.

    • jpelle82 - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:24 AM

      he didnt come in with 1st round pedigree, he paid his dues and earned everything he got. undrafted despite scoring 87 pts in 31 games in juniors and a solid career at vt. chip on his shoulder and he was clearly descriminated against due to his size going to the nhl. if it werent for guys like marty and briere, whitney and sullivan, guys like nathan gerbe wouldnt have even gotten a look. he helped pave the way for little men everywhere. 1000 points 1000 games art, hart, byng, cup – all good enough for me – yes he should no doubt be in when he calls it quits. you are either a fool or just trolling sir, you should find a better article to do so…marty is the man.

  2. mianfr - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:27 PM

    Do a write-up for someone with Jagr’s size and all those statistics and trophies. He’s a no-doubt lock.

    I’m not picking on Jagr whatsoever, by the way, since he’s also as much of a lock as you can be, but he’s pretty much St. Louis’s physical opposite.

  3. kilo8900 - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:46 PM

    Yes!

  4. danaking - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:52 PM

    It figures he’d lead a shortened season in scoring. (Sorry, couldn’t resist.)

  5. kingsforever - Aug 5, 2013 at 11:59 PM

    Everyone not named Rogi Vachone makes the Hall of Fame so why not?

  6. jb8588 - Aug 6, 2013 at 12:02 AM

    Without Marty, the Bolts are far worse overall for the past decade plus. He’s a true one of a kind player who is a role model for all of the smaller players out there. No doubt about it, Marty is a Hall of Famer.

  7. hockeyflow33 - Aug 6, 2013 at 1:12 AM

    I think he falls into the very, very good category that puts him on the bubble and if he comes to vote during a weak class, maybe he can sneak in. In my mind, the HoF should be reserved for guys who can change the game.

    • jpelle82 - Aug 6, 2013 at 10:31 AM

      he changed the game for small guys. early on he wasnt scared to get in the tough places and score (a little less now with his age) and little guys like gallagher for mtl are still doing the same thing with no fear and proving it can be done.

      • hockeyflow33 - Aug 6, 2013 at 5:30 PM

        I’m sure Ted Lindsay, Theo Fleury, Pat Verbeek, Rod Gilbert, Marcel Dionne, BoomBoom Geoffrion would be disappointed to learn that they weren’t good enough to inspire other small guys

      • jpelle82 - Aug 7, 2013 at 2:06 PM

        dude the only guy you listed under 5’9 was theo fleury and he was playing at 180lbs at 5’6″. you ask these young kids coming into the league who boom boom is or who st louis is and see how many of them know who is who. ted lindsay was playing during ww2. there were only 6 teams then and there werent any europeans or blacks either. goalies didnt wear masks and players didnt have helmets. you picking up what i’m laying down here? different league back then, there were plenty of little white guys figure skating around then without fear of a 6’9″ chara-like defenseman.

  8. johnwwt1976 - Aug 6, 2013 at 1:16 AM

    Far worse???? Tampa has had 3 top 3 draft picks in the last 6 years, only the oilers have been worse, so without Marty could it really have been much different? I still think he’s a great player though

    • mathieug79 - Aug 6, 2013 at 8:04 AM

      I see your point but that’s way out of Marty’s hands, that’s the GM/2 idiot owners fault, they went on a spending spree on one of the worst years in FA. Signed Ohlund (how’s that signing looking now?), If you actually look at Tampa Bay’s drafting history, its been one of the worst EVER!

      In their history, they only have 17 draft picks that played more than 300 NHL games, out of just over 200 draft picks….that’s about to change. Since Yzerman and Al Murray have been hired more and more draft picks and Non-drafted signing have been making it to the NHL. this season there are 3 spots up for grab for rookies, its something you would never see in tampa as they would have rather fill those spots up with old washed up veterans.

      Anyways YOU CAN’T blame St Louis for finishing last, Hockey is a team sport. The guy has been a true inspiration to all the young kids.

  9. phillyphanatic77 - Aug 6, 2013 at 5:23 AM

    Don’t get me wrong, St. Louis has had an amazing career. And his size/back story make it that much more unbelievable, but he’s not one of those transcendent players you think about when you hear “Hall of Fame”. He’s a bubble player, who, IMO, isn’t HOF-caliber. He’s just a notch below. Totally different players, but if a generational talent like Lindros can’t get in then idk how to justify St. Louis in the hall. I just can’t mention him in the same breath as players like Sakic, Yzerman, Gretzky, Messier, etc. Even players like Oates and Ron Francis are far superior. No disrespect to Marty.

    • hazlydose - Aug 6, 2013 at 4:15 PM

      “Even players like Ron Francis”. Are you suggesting that the man who is 4th in points, 2nd in assists, and has won two Stanley Cups is a borderline Hall of Famer?

      • hockeyflow33 - Aug 6, 2013 at 5:32 PM

        He falls into the category of being really good for a really long time

      • phillyphanatic77 - Aug 7, 2013 at 2:38 PM

        No I wasn’t suggesting that all. He’s a surefire Hall of Famer, no doubt about it. What I was saying is that in the Hall there are tiers of great players. Up top you have the legends- Gretzky, Lemieux, Messier, Howe, Orr, etc. Then you have great players who aren’t in the same category but were still amazing performers- Francis, Oates, etc. Marty St. Louis is in the tier below them. And that’s why he is not hall worthy.

  10. kaptaanamerica - Aug 6, 2013 at 6:22 AM

    Just look at the hardware the guys got.he should get in.

  11. brockohol - Aug 6, 2013 at 8:48 AM

    while his career numbers are not as gawdy as most other players in the HOF…you have to take into consideration the era he played where just averaging a point a game was few and far between. I would be interested to see where he ranks point wise with other players during his career. I would guess its in the top 10. throw in the hardware and a cup and you can make a steong case

  12. LampyB - Aug 6, 2013 at 8:51 AM

    I definitely believe he should make it in. This guy has so much talent to compensate for size, and he can pull points with the best in the league. Stamkos is great, but where do think his pucks come from?

  13. heynyc61 - Aug 6, 2013 at 9:23 AM

    Yes! Classy guy

  14. blackhawks2010 - Aug 6, 2013 at 9:32 AM

    Yes, his numbers and awards are HOF worthy. He has made everyone around him better with unselfish play, ie Stamkos, Vinny, also.

  15. tankerkevo2013 - Aug 6, 2013 at 6:02 PM

    He still has a few years left in his tank, but already I believe he is one of the best ever to play on the right wing. He has assisted two different centers to a Rocket Richard, accumulated now two Art Ross’s, three Lady Bings , and a Hart Memorial League MVP. I’m not aware of another RW to ever accomplish all of that. He is a sport’s legend and makes any center he’s paired with elite.

    Since the ’02-’03 season, when he was first promoted from the grinding lines to the scoring lines, he has amassed at least 25 goals each season with the exception of the shortened 12-13 season where he was on pace to score 35.

    Oh, and he’s won a Stanley Cup.

    Yeah, I’d say he’s easily a first chance HOF inductee. Anyone who disagrees is either a jealous little girl or trolling.

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