Martin St. Louis' status for Game 5 uncertain after mother's death

May 9, 8:46 AM

The New York Rangers confirmed that Martin St. Louis' mother, France, passed away Thursday at the age of 63.  

She reportedly suffered a heart attack after a long battle with illness, according to the New York Daily News.  

With a victory in Game 5 on Friday night, the Pittsburgh Penguins can eliminate New York and advance to the Eastern Conference's third round. It is unknown whether St. Louis will be in the lineup. 

The Rangers won't provide any updates on St. Louis until two hours before Friday's game, writes The New York Times' Jeff Z. Klein:

The Rangers have not confirmed whether St. Louis has returned home to Montreal. A Rangers spokesman said Coach Alain Vigneault would speak to reporters at 5 p.m., two hours before the start of Game 5.

May 18, 3:39 PM

Alain Vigneault says Rangers were 'profoundly' touched by funeral for St. Louis' mother

May 18, 3:39 PM

As one family lost a loved one, the bond of another has grown significantly stronger. 

The New York Rangers rallied to defeat the Pittsburgh Penguins and took a 1-0 series lead over the Montreal Canadiens in the Eastern Conference Final in the four games since Martin St. Louis' mother unexpectedly passed. 

Today, at her funeral, St. Louis' family continued to inspire. 

The Blueshirts will attempt to extend their postseason win streak to five games Monday.

Feature photo courtesy of REUTERS/Christinne Muschi

May 18, 3:22 PM

Rangers coaches, players join Martin St. Louis for mother's funeral

May 18, 3:22 PM

LAVAL, Que. - New York Rangers coaches and players joined star forward Martin St. Louis at his mother's funeral today north of Montreal. 

St. Louis' former Tampa Bay Lightning teammate Steven Stamkos and Hall of Famer Guy Lafleur also attended. 

His mother died suddenly three days before Mother's Day in the middle of the Rangers' series against the Pittsburgh Penguins. 

St. Louis didn't miss a game and provided a lift to his teammates as they battled back from a 3-1 deficit to win the series. 

The Rangers beat the Montreal Canadiens 7-2 on Saturday in the first game of the Eastern Conference final.

A handful of hockey fans watched as the Rangers players dismounted from the team bus and entered the Laval funeral home. 

Game 2 of the series is Monday in Montreal. 

Feature photo courtesy of REUTERS/Christinne Muschi

May 15, 1:40 PM

Entire Rangers team to attend funeral for St. Louis' mother France on Sunday

May 15, 1:40 PM

The death of Martin St. Louis' mother France St. Louis during the New York Rangers' second round playoff series against the Pittsburgh Penguins, and St. Louis scoring the opening goal in a critical Game 6 in front of his immediate family, was a major storyline of the second round. It was also something of a rallying cry for the Rangers as they eliminated a 3-1 series deficit to advance to the Eastern Conference Final.

The Eastern Conference Final series between the Rangers and the Canadiens will open in Montreal on Saturday night, and on Sunday, the entire Rangers team will attend a funeral service for France St. Louis

Feature photo courtesy of Adam Hunger/USA TODAY Sports

May 12, 10:03 AM

VIDEO: Rangers' St. Louis presents entire team with 'Broadway Hat'

May 12, 10:03 AM

"I couldn't be f------ prouder to be a New York Ranger with you guys."

Following Sunday's Game 6 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins, an emotionally drained Martin St. Louis, mere days after the passing of his mother, delivered a passionate speech to his New York Rangers teammates and presented the entire squad with the "Broadway Hat".

[Video Courtesy: NHL.com]

St. Louis scored a goal in the Rangers' 3-1 Mother's day win, and will play Game 7 Tuesday night in Pittsburgh.

May 11, 10:51 PM

Rangers' St. Louis on emotional Mother's Day goal: 'I know she's helping me through this'

May 11, 10:51 PM

On Sunday night, Rangers forward Martin St. Louis scored a goal on Mother's Day, just a small handful of days after his mother France passed away. With his father and sister in attendance it was an emotional moment for the veteran forward, and St. Louis was clearly making an effort to stay composed while discussing the moment and the goal with the media after Game 6.

"I got a pretty good bounce on the first one, obviously right place, but you have to work for your bounce," St. Louis said. "And I know she's helping me through this."

Asked to discuss the significance of the moment personally, St. Louis appeared to be fighting back tears: "It's Mother's Day, my dad's here, my sister's here, its been a tough time for my whole family, so being able to get the lead in the first period... Yeah... It was a good moment."

After St. Louis scored the critical opening goal in Game 6, he retrieved the puck. Asked what he'd do with it, St. Louis responded: "I'll give it to my dad, it's a puck that has got a significance for everybody that has been supportive of me and my family..."

Just an extraordinary moment, a genuinely touching story.

You can watch St. Louis' comments in full here:

[Courtesy rangers.nhl.com]

May 11, 7:25 PM

Mother's Day Miracle: Martin St. Louis opens the scoring in Game 6 in front of his family

May 11, 7:25 PM

This is one hell of a mother's day story. Stricken by grief this week due to the passing of his mother France, New York Rangers forward Martin St. Louis has remained in the New York Rangers lineup - even as he's flown between New York, Montreal and Pittsburgh after every contest to be with his family.

On Mother's Day, St. Louis' family - including his sister Isabelle and his father Normand - were in attendance at Madison Square Garden, where they watched St. Louis open the scoring early in the first period:

[Courtesy NHL.com]

"This is a day that’s special to me, obviously," St. Louis told reporters ahead of Sunday night's Game 6. "To have my dad and my sister here, I think it helps the grieving process."

May 10, 11:26 PM

Rangers' St. Louis to play in front of family members in Game 6 vs. Penguins on Mother's Day

May 10, 11:26 PM

The New York Rangers will play host to the Pittsburgh Penguins for Game 6 of their second-round series on Sunday, a day that will hold special significance for Martin St. Louis, whose mother passed away unexpectedly earlier in the week.

St. Louis flew back to Montreal after Game 5 Friday, but will return to New York with his father, Normand, and sister, Isabelle, so they will be able to spend Mother’s Day together and be at Madison Square Garden for Game 6.

“Obviously, it’s going to be a very emotional night again for our group, it being mother’s day and the situation Marty is going through right now,” head coach Alain Vigneault said. “Marty flew home last night to Montreal after the game to pick up his father and his sister. He’s bringing them both to the game tomorrow and, hopefully, that will bring us some positive energy.”

The Rangers need a win to keep their their playoff hopes alive, and will be looking to channel that emotion into a united effort.

“I do know it’s going to be emotional night without a doubt for our group again,” Vigneualt reiterated. “But, through adversity and through some of these moments, we’ve been able to focus in the right areas and I think that’s what we did last night. We focused in the right areas and applied the game plan that we wanted to apply. Right now, if our intentions are on continuing to play this year, we have to win tomorrow."

May 10, 11:34 AM

VIDEO: Martin St. Louis receives Broadway Hat after Game 5 win

May 10, 11:34 AM

If visions of the Stanley Cup wasn't inspiring enough, one look at Martin St. Louis grieving the loss of his mother was unquestionably all the motivation the New York Rangers needed in order to avoid a second-round exit Friday night at the hands of the Pittsburgh Penguins. 

After the game, cameras captured an emotional locker room, who applauded St. Louis after earning the team's customary Broadway Hat. 

[H/t NHL.com]

Feature photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports/Charles LeClaire

May 9, 10:57 PM

St. Louis makes emotional return to Rangers lineup for Game 5

May 9, 10:57 PM

Although Martin St. Louis didn't have an impact on the score-sheet for the New York Rangers in Game 5 against the Pittsburgh Penguins, one has to imagine his impact was felt on an emotional level during their 5-1 victory Friday.

St. Louis compiled 16:19 of ice time and one shot on goal after making the decision to participate in the Rangers' crucial playoff game just one day after the unexpected death of his mother, France.

France St. Louis, 63, passed away Thursday and it was unknown whether St. Louis would play in Friday's game until just hours before puck-drop.

His reason for playing was echoed after the game when he spoke with reporters.

[Courtesy: NHL.com]

May 9, 7:59 PM

VIDEO: Penguins' Crosby offers condolences to Rangers' St. Louis prior to Game 5

May 9, 7:59 PM

New York Rangers forward Martin St. Louis made the decision to play Game 5 Friday in Pittsburgh after the sudden passing of his mother a day earlier.

Prior to the game, Penguins captain and St. Louis' Team Canada teammate at the Winter Olympics in Sochi this past February took a moment to offer his condolences, as captured by Hockey Night in Canada cameras.

The Penguins, of course, were looking to eliminate St. Louis and the Rangers with a win in Game 5. In that context, this interaction takes on a deeper meaning as competitive edge and ego was set aside in a moment of compassion and shared humanity.

A simple act by the game's greatest superstar, but one that reminds us that there's much more to our favourite hockey players than what we see on the ice.

(S/T CBS Eye on Hockey)

Feature photo courtesy of USA TODAY Sports/Charles LeClaire

May 9, 5:27 PM

Rangers' St. Louis to play Friday following the death of his mother

May 9, 5:27 PM

The uncertainty surrounding Martin St. Louis' availability for the New York Rangers in Game 5 on Friday is over.

And it's almost impossible for anyone argue the reasoning behind the decision to play, even though it's just one day after the death of his mother.

St. Louis reportedly traveled to Montreal on Thursday evening to be with family where there was, understandably, a lot of discussion about his possible absence from Friday's lineup.

St. Louis and his line-mates have had their struggles against the Penguins, combining for 0 points and a -5 rating in the second round, but his inclusion in the lineup will surely provide a boost to the Rangers as they try to avoid elimination in Pittsburgh.