The San Jose Sharks have maintained a star-studded core for years. Patrick Marleau, Joe Thornton, Joe Pavelski, Dan Boyle, Logan Couture and Antti Niemi have all been mainstays for at least three seasons.
Marleau and Thornton have been the longest-standing constants on a team that has won only three games after the second round of the Stanley Cup Playoffs in its 21-year history. This has led to a perception among NHL fans that they are to blame.
This only shows how much the average fan watches a team that plays most of its games after most of the hockey-viewing world has turned in for the night. In reality, the veterans are usually the best playoff performers San Jose has.
Last season, the Sharks only had one player outside of the aforementioned core who scored even a point per two games (Brent Burns). The five core skaters were the only ones to get more than four points in the Stanley Cup playoffs.
Meanwhile, they rode Niemi's netminding to victory in the regular season and playoffs. That may make San Jose's stars the most important to their team throughout the entire NHL.
True stars usually do not have holes in their game and do one or more things great. Here are the best attributes that make each one of the top Sharks a star.