Martin St. Louis has had to overcome quite a few obstacles to get where he is in the NHL. Listed at just 5-foot-9, 177-pounds, he's had to fight the "undersized" label, he wasn't drafted, and he was unceremoniously dumped by the Calgary Flames after just two seasons. Through it all, St. Louis has managed to turn himself into one of the best players in the league.
His 2003-04 season was especially noteworthy, as he took home the Art Ross Trophy as the league's leading scorer, the Hart Trophy as the Most Valuable Player, and the Lester B. Pearson award as the best player in the league as voted on by the players. He also led the league in assists, shorthanded goals and plus/minus, while also getting his name engraved on the Stanley Cup. His 24 points in 23 playoff games, including four goals in the Stanley Cup Final against the Calgary Flames, would have made him a worthy choice for the Conn Smythe Trophy as well (his teammate Brad Richards won it).
Draft Year: Not Drafted
Despite being a Hobey Baker finalist, and one of the most prolific scorers at the University of Vermont, St. Louis did not get drafted. He signed with Calgary in 1998, played sparingly with the Flames for two seasons, and was released following the 1999-00 season. Tampa Bay scooped him up and was rewarded with one of the best free agency steals in ... well ... ever.
Why He's On My List
To steal a line from the Big Book Of NHL Cliche, he plays bigger than his size. He's a five-time 30-goal scorer, including his 30 in 2008-09, a five-time All-Star, and he rarely misses a game, having played at least 80 games six straight years. He's missed just two games since the start of the 2002-03 season. He plays in every situation, and has finished in the top-10 for shorthanded goals four times, including the aforementioned 2003-04 season when he led the league with eight. Goal-scorer. Playmaker. All around great player.
Obligatory YouTube Video
St. Louis has used this move a couple of times in the shootout for team Canada and Tampa Bay. Here he is busting it out against Marc-Andre Fleury.