On the same day Martin St. Louis learned he was left off the 2014 Canadian Olympic team, the Tampa Bay Lightning right wing did what he’s done throughout his long and brilliant NHL career. Show up with the intent of proving doubters wrong.
St. Louis’ two goals in Tuesday night’s 4-2 win over the Winnipeg Jets punctuated that very point, especially when word came out this evening that speed was one factor that contributed to Canada’s final decision of leaving him off an already stacked roster.
While he handled the disappointment like a true professional, it’s no fluke St. Louis recorded not only the winning goal, but also an empty netter in which he showed Canada’s brass just how fast he is, whizzing past defenders to put the game away. Pretty impressive for a player dubbed to be ‘too slow’ for international ice, huh?
I completely understand every country’s faced with tough decisions, none more than Canada who could easily field two medal-contending Olympic teams, but St. Louis’ statistics over the past four years have been nothing short of remarkable. His 19 goals and 40 points in 43 games, many coming without longtime linemate Steven Stamkos, are impressive, as is the fact he became the oldest player in league history to capture the Art Ross trophy (scoring title) last season.
Can St. Louis use this snub to carry Tampa Bay to their second championship ever? While unknown, that would be a fitting end for someone whose career has been focused on proving all the naysayers wrong.