Born September 15, 1979 (age 32) in Swift Current, Saskatchewan, Canada
Center/left wing and home alternate captain for the San Jose Sharks
If you want to talk about loyalty to one team, there are definitely some guys who can be held up as good examples of sticking around–think Shane Doan, Patrice Bergeron, Patrick Marleau. Marleau has been with the Sharks since he was picked by them in 1997 after two years of major junior hockey in Seattle. Interestingly, Marleau was picked right behind Joe Thornton in that draft year. Thornton would later become his teammate and captain. Anyway, Marleau struggled at first to adapt to the big times, but former coach Daryl Sutter taught him well and he improved greatly. San Jose had a rotating captaincy for part of 2003-04 after a captain departure and Marleau got the C, permanently, after it was worn by three other guys. He took a break during the lockout, but came back in top form the next year, maybe adapting very well to the newly speedy game. He notched his 400th point that season and was a Lady Byng Trophy finalist.
2006-07 was great for Marleau. He passed the Sharks’ goals, assists and points franchise records quickly in January 2007 and went to his second All-Star game. Then he hit 500 points in November 2007, just keeping the highlight reel going. In 2009, he was relieved of his captaincy duties, but was given the A when new captain Rob Blake was named. So he lost the letter, but 2009 wasn’t all terrible: he got his first hat trick, played his 900th game and scored his 300th goal. His big 1,000th game happened in January 2011. All told, as of this writing he has played 1,035 NHL games and has 766 points to his name, all while wearing teal.