When the 2014 Canadian Olympic team was announced earlier this year, there was one big name left off the list: Martin St. Louis.
That situation has been rectified today, however, as news came out that St. Louis would be replacing Tampa Bay Lightning teammate Steven Stamkos on the national team. Stamkos, who has been out since November with a broken leg, announced yesterday he was not yet healthy enough to compete in the tournament. Things looked optimistic earlier in the week, and he may see some game action this weekend but that’s all.
Although the forward is 38-years-old, St. Louis has become somewhat of an ageless wonder, continuing to put up points even as the seasons go on. Over the summer he was named captain of the Lightning when Vincent Lecavalier was bought out. St. Louis was carrying the Bolts’ offense in the absence of Stamkos and seemed a shoe-in to make the Canadian roster.
But the national team had other ideas.
Despite GM Steve Yzerman being in charge of both the Lightning and Team Canada, he opted to go with a younger squad. St. Louis responded by scoring four goals in a game against the San Jose Sharks and has still managed to continue putting up points. However, in the wake of the Stamkos news, St. Louis was the only option Canada could go with. Though he isn’t the biggest body on the ice, St. Louis provides more veteran leadership to a team that is stacked with NHL captains and a dangerous playmaker who can play with anyone on the ice.