The Lightning's Martin St. Louis probably never expected to make it this far. In fact, St. Louis knows he beat the odds just to make it at all -- and tonight in Los Angeles he plays in game number 1,000.
That is a HUGE deal -- only 29 other players have done it, including his General Manager Steve Yzerman.
Most of those who make this incredible mark are in the Hall of Fame, or they will be -- so tonight Martin St. Louis cements his legacy in the NHL.
The career started back in 1998 with the Calgary Flames and St. Louis didn't exactly hit the ice making a big impact. He played 13 games with the Flames and then was sent back down to the minors for the next two years. St. Louis is use to proving doubters wrong. He had to do it as a kid just learning the game and that personal push has driven him his entire career.
St. Louis has always done it the right way -- spurning offers by the NHL to leave the University of Vermont early, he stayed in school finishing as the Catamount's all time leading scorer, a record he still holds today.
He was named to the ECAC's All Decade team in the 1990s, and was inducted into the University of Vermont's Athletic Hall of Fame back in 2007.
St. Louis has won the Hart Trophy, the Art Ross Trophy and the Lady Byng -- but really he has won the hearts of the Lightning fans in his 13 seasons with this team. At 38 years old, he is now the Captain of the Lightning and this is clearly his team -- his franchise.
You know the team will honor St. Louis when he comes back to Tampa after this road trip, and the fans will be able to share in that celebration. Because 1,000 games is more of a record, in a season that is a grind with an off-season that is just as demanding -- Martin St. Louis locks in his name as one of the biggest in the game.
FOX 13 / WTVT-TV
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