Since entering the NHL in 1997-98, Centre Patrick Marleau has shown flashes of brilliance while refining his consistency and defensive play. His playmaking skills and natural touch around the net were evident throughout his amateur career.
Born in Aneroid, Saskatchewan, Marleau notched 167 points in 53 games for the AA Swift Current club in 1993-94 before moving up to the SJHL and the WHL's Seattle Thunderbirds. Marleau was the second player chosen in the 1997 NHL Entry Draft after Joe Thornton. His 51 goals and immense potential attracted the San Jose Sharks and he earned a spot on the roster at his first training camp.
Marleau recorded 32 points and was a responsible defensive player as an NHL rookie in 1997-98. He gradually saw more ice time and recorded his first 20-goal season in 1998-99 and was invited to play for team Canada at the 1999 World Championships. In 2000-01, established a career high in goals with 25 and represented his homeland for a second time at the 2001 World Championships and a third time in 2003.
A durable player, Marleau had only missed 16 games in his first seven seasons and reached the 300-point mark in 2003-04. After seeing his season come to an end in the Western Conference Final, Marleau was named to Canada's entry for the 2004 World Cup of Hockey. Despite having his NHL season washed out from the NHL labour dispute, Marleau, who was already a two-time member of Canada's World Championship team was named to its 2005 team that captured silver in Vienna.
The 2005-06 NHL season was a breakout one for Marleau. Alongside the newly acquired Joe Thornton, Marleau established new single-season career highs for goals, assists and points. He picked up where he left off the following season with the Sharks but struggled somewhat in 2007-08.
On the international stage, Marleau, along with his Sharks linemates Joe Thornton and Dany Heatley, was part of the Canadian team that captured gold on home soil at the 2010 Olympic Winter Games in Vancouver.