Durable, physically strong two-way center that excels in a defensive shutdown role and on the penalty kill.
Nickname - “Staalsy”
Played 5 NHL seasons, all with Pittsburgh, breaking into the league as an 18-year-old rookie in 2006-07.
Key member of Penguins’ 2009 Stanley Cup championship. During title run was paired against opposing team’s top forwards, holding Philadelphia’s Jeff Carter to 1 goal in 6 games and older brother Eric Staal of Carolina to 1 goal in Eastern Conference Finals. Scored series-changing shorthanded goal against Detroit in Game 4 of Stanley Cup Final.
Nominated for Selke Trophy (2010, best defensive forward) and Calder Trophy (2006, rookie of the year).
Voted by his peers as the team’s Player’s Player in 2009-10, an award given to the player that best exemplifies leadership for the team, both on and off the ice.
Durable and reliable center played in a franchise-record 358-consecutive games including playoffs (328, Ron Schock). Staal’s streak of 302-straight regular-season contests ranks 2nd in team history (313, Schock). Staal’s regular-season streak began on Dec. 7, 2006 at NY Rangers and ended when he missed the 2010-11 season-opener.
Missed first 39 games of 2010-11 season with a foot infection (12) and broken hand (27), the 1st regular-season games he’s missed in his NHL career due to injury. Made season debut at 2011 Winter Classic at Heinz Field.
Finished the ‘10-11 regular season with 30 points (11G-19A) over his final 37 games and led the Penguins with a career-high-tying 4 game-winning goals.
Was a valuable member of the NHL’s No. 1-ranked penalty killing unit in ‘10-11, ranking 4th on the team among forwards with an average of 2:30 shorthanded minutes per game.
Named to NHL All-Rookie Team as 18-year-old in 2006-07. Ranked 2nd among rookies that season with a career-high 29 goals (2nd behind teammate Evgeni Malkin, 33).
Set NHL rookie record and led NHL with 7 shorthanded goals in 2006-07.
Youngest player in NHL history to score 2 shorthanded goals in 1 game and to score on a penalty shot (Oct. 21, 2006 vs. Columbus). Became 1st player since 1982 to score each of his 1st 3 NHL goals shorthanded.
Youngest player in NHL history to record a hat trick (18 years, 153 days), which included game-winning OT goal Feb. 10, 2007 vs. Toronto.
Was 3rd-youngest player to score 20 goals, behind only Ted Lindsay and Sidney Crosby.
Recorded 2nd career hat trick Nov. 11, 2008 at Detroit, scoring all 3 goals in the 3rd period (game-tying goal scored with 22.8 seconds remaining in regulation) to force overtime and then assisting on the game-winning goal in the extra session.
Career-high 6-game scoring streak from April 1 to 11, 2010 (2G-6A).
Played career-high 29:04 minutes Feb. 23, 2011 vs. San Jose.
Won gold medal with Team Canada at 2007 World Championships, chipping in 2 assists.
Invited to Canada’s National Men’s Team orientation camp for 2010 Olympic Games.
Played 2 seasons with Peterborough of the Ontario Hockey League from 2004-06, playing in OHL All-Star Game in 2005-06.
Member of “hockey’s first family” with brothers Eric and Jared (Carolina) and Marc (NY Rangers) also members of NHL clubs.
Signed through 2012-13 season.