Advertisement
  1. Lightning

Steven Stamkos' 60th goal epitomizes camaraderie with Tampa Bay Lightning teammate Marty St. Louis

Published Apr. 9, 2012

WINNIPEG — It was interesting to listen Saturday night as Lightning stars Steven Stamkos and Marty St. Louis admired each other's work.

Stamkos, in the glow of his historic 60th goal scored in Tampa Bay's season-ending 4-3 overtime win over the Jets at the MTS Centre, called St. Louis "the best play-maker in the game right now."

Said St. Louis: "He pulls the trigger pretty good."

They are joined at the hip, these friends and linemates.

Stamkos' career took off in January 2009, when then-coach Rick Tocchet paired the rookie center with the right wing. St. Louis, 36, has said playing with Stamkos keeps him feeling young.

How appropriate, then, St. Louis got the primary assist as Stamkos, 22, became just the 20th NHL player to score 60 goals in a season.

"I couldn't have written a better script," Stamkos said. "Marty is a huge reason I've had the success I've had in the NHL."

"I wanted to give him a chance," said St. Louis, who also assisted on Stamkos' 50th goal March 13 against the Bruins an on 20 of his goals overall. "I wanted to do my part to help him."

You saw their symbiosis on the 60th goal.

St. Louis had the puck behind the Jets goal line between the net and a corner. Skating slowly backward toward the glass, St. Louis waited for Stamkos to find shooting space in the slot.

"I look for him all the time," St. Louis said. "But when you get close to these marks, you look for him a little more."

Stamkos' goal, 3:29 into the third period, beat Ondrej Pavelec on the short side for a 3-1 lead.

After the game, left wing Ryan Malone gave Stamkos a celebratory shaving cream pie in the face. Players spoke of how happy they were for Stamkos' success.

"I'm just as excited as he is," said right wing Teddy Purcell, who had a hat trick and the winning goal 1:07 into overtime. "It just goes to show how tight of a group we are."

"What I like about Steven's accomplishments is he always makes it a team thing, and the players want to be part of it because of that," coach Guy Boucher said.

"I like the way the players want to do it for him."

None, perhaps, more than St. Louis, who has had a prime seat as Stamkos evolved from a player known primarily for his one-timer to one who can score from anywhere on the ice.

"When he came into the league, everybody was so scared of his one-timer," St. Louis said. "You start having success like that, they're going to start taking it away and it becomes harder and harder. You almost feel like you have to reinvent yourself and find different ways to score goals, and he's done that."

With a pretty good wing man.

"I'm so fortunate to play with him," Stamkos said. "It was nice to share that moment with him."

Damian Cristodero can be reached at cristodero@tampabay.com. Follow him on Twitter at @LightningTimes.

ALSO IN THIS SECTION

  1. Victor Hedman will play in the Lightning's preseason game against Nashville. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Victor Hedman, Nikita Kucherov and other NHL regulars will play against Nashville
  2. The Lightning put goalie Louis Domingue on waivers Friday. SHADD, DIRK  |  Tampa Bay Times
    Tampa Bay plans to send both goalies to the AHL if they clear waivers
  3. Former Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Dan Girardi announced his retirement on Friday. SHADD, DIRK  |  Tampa Bay Times
    The 35-year-old played 13 seasons total, making the playoffs 12 of those.
  4. Tim Tebow. [Associated Press)] Associated Press
    Sports Day Tampa Bay podcast: Tom Jones and Rick Stroud debate Tebow, Dickie V, the first-place Bucs and the Rays playoff chase
  5. Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Mikhail Sergachev (98) waits his turn during drills on the first day on the ice at the beginning of training camp at the Ice Sports Forum. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Tampa Bay doesn’t have many roster spots available, but the positions within the lineup are still taking shape.
  6. Tampa Bay Lightning forward Jimmy Huntington (47) takes a bite out of his stick blade while taking with goaltending coach Frantz Jean on the first day on the ice at the beginning of training camp. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Tampa Bay has had success with undrafted players like Tyler Johnson and Alex Barre-Boulet.
  7. Tampa Bay Lightning's Cory Conacher (89) looks to pass the puck with Carolina Hurricanes' Clark Bishop (64) reaching in during the first period of an NHL preseason hockey game, in Raleigh, N.C, Wednesday, Sept. 18, 2019. KARL B DEBLAKER  |  AP
    Tampa Bay falls into the same penalty trap as first game: way too many. Preseason isn’t off to an ideal start.
  8. Tampa Bay Lightning players on the first day on the ice at the beginning of training camp at the Ice Sports Forum on September 13, 2019 in Brandon, FL. DIRK SHADD  |  Times
    Tampa Bay’s training camp roster is reduced by six.
  9. Cal Foote (left) and his brother Nolan will play for the Lightning in a preseason game tonight. It's a moment they've long anticipated. Tampa Bay Times
    The brothers will play together as Nolan gets his first preseason game on Wednesday.
  10. Tampa Bay Lightning defenseman Kevin Shattenkirk (22) looks for an open teammate during the first day of HL hockey training camp Friday, Sept. 13, 2019, in Brandon, Fla. (AP Photo/Chris O'Meara) CHRIS O'MEARA  |  AP
    Kevin Shattenkirk and Luke Schenn will make their Lightning debuts against Carolina on Wednesday night.
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement