|Born||August 15, 1977 |
Lac-Saint-Charles, Quebec, Canada
|Height||6 ft 2 in (1.88 m)|
|Weight||170 lb (77 kg; 12 st 2 lb)|
|Played for||Buffalo Sabres|
New York Islanders
New York Rangers
|NHL Draft||16th overall, 1995|
Martin Biron (born Martin Gaston Biron on August 15, 1977) is a Canadian-American former professional ice hockey goaltender.
Drafted by the Buffalo Sabres in the first round (16th overall) of the 1995 NHL Entry Draft, he spent the first half of his sixteen-year National Hockey League (NHL) career with the Sabres, later having stints with the Philadelphia Flyers, New York Islanders and the New York Rangers.
Martin now works as an analyst on the TSN panel (along with James Duthie, Aaron Ward and Bob McKenzie) is an occasional studio commentator for the Sabres & Islanders broadcasts on MSG and is the director of goaltending at the Academy of Hockey at the Buffalo HarborCenter. He also works as a studio analyst on the NHL Network.
Martin began his hockey career on the Beauport Harfangs of the Quebec Major Junior Hockey League (QMJHL). He made his NHL debut with the Buffalo Sabres on December 26, 1995.
An emergency call-up with the Sabres' top three goaltenders all injured, he became the fourth-youngest goaltender to start a game in NHL history, surrendering four first-period goals in a 6-3 loss to the Pittsburgh Penguins.
After posting a 5.04 goals against average (GAA) with no wins and two losses during his fill-in stint, Martin was sent back to the QMJHL to develop further. After the 2000–01 season, he was a consistent goaltender for the Sabres as his play in the crease improved drastically.
After NHL statisticians discovered a bug in their new stat-tracking software, the "Biron rule" restricted jersey numbers to whole numbers between 1 and 99 (later limited to numbers between 1 and 98 after the league-wide retirement of number 99 for Wayne Gretzky).
He was the only NHL player affected as only he wore "00" at the time. (Goaltender John Davidson also wore 00 during his playing career, without rebuke, at various points between 1973 and 1983.) Upon his return to the NHL three seasons later, Martin switched to number 43 and wore that number until the end of his career.
Martin became the Sabres' starting goaltender after Hasek's departure from Buffalo in 2001 and held the position until the 2004-05 NHL lockout.
He has always been a fan favorite in Buffalo and although he no longer plays there, he currently resides in the city and after his retirement has a position as director of goaltending at HarborCenter (which is owned and operated by the Sabres organization).
After losing the number one goaltending job to emerging youngster Ryan Miller, Martin requested a trade from the Sabres on June 26, 2006 in an effort to receive more playing time.
Finally, on February 27, 2007, the Sabres traded him to the Philadelphia Flyers for a second-round draft pick.
On March 27, 2007, Martin signed a two-year, $7 million contract extension with the Flyers to be the starting goaltender in Philadelphia.
After appearing in 62 games and recording 30 wins in the 2007–08 season, he led the Flyers to the Eastern Conference Finals, losing in five games to the Eastern Conference champion Pittsburgh Penguins. He appeared in 55 games for the Flyers in the 2008–09 season, winning 29 and helping the Flyers to the fifth-overall seed in the Eastern Conference.
On July 1, 2009, Martin entered free agency. He was soon left in a difficult position after the Flyers signed goaltenders Ray Emery and Brian Boucher while other teams quickly filled up their goaltending roster needs.
In Martin's 29 appearances, he recorded nine wins to go with 14 losses and four overtime losses, with a 3.27 goals against average and .896 save percentage. The Islanders did not qualify for the post-season.
On July 1, 2010, he signed a two-year, $1.75 million deal with the New York Rangers, where he prepared to back-up Swedish starter Henrik Lundqvist.
Martin is one of four players in NHL history to skate for all three teams based in the state of New York. The others were Mike Donnelly and former teammates Jason Dawe & Pat LaFontaine.
He played almost his entire career in the state of New York, except for a brief 2 1⁄2-year stint with the Philadelphia Flyers.
On February 28, 2011, Martin fractured his collarbone during practice and was forced to miss the remainder of the 2010–11 season. While he played the shortest number of games (17) since his second NHL season in the 1998–99 season, he posted career highs in save percentage (.923) and goals against average (2.13).
On June 29, 2012, Martin re-signed with the Rangers in a one-way contract worth $2.6 million over two years, working out to an average of $1.3 million per year.
On October 14, 2013, the Rangers placed, he was placed on waivers after a poor start to the season. The following day, he was assigned to play with the Hartford Wolf Pack of the American Hockey League (AHL).
On October 20, 2013, Martin announced his retirement via social media, choosing retirement over playing in the minor leagues. He ended his career with a 230–191–25–27 record, 2.62 goals against average and a .910 save percentage
|1997–98||South Carolina Stingrays||ECHL||2||0||1||1||—||86||3||0||2.09||.929|
|2009–10||New York Islanders||NHL||29||9||14||—||4||1634||89||1||3.27||.896|
|2009–10||Bridgeport Sound Tigers||AHL||2||1||1||—||0||124||7||0||3.39||.903|
|2010–11||New York Rangers||NHL||17||8||6||—||0||928||33||0||2.13||.923|
|2011–12||New York Rangers||NHL||21||12||6||—||2||1220||50||2||2.46||.904|
|2012–13||New York Rangers||NHL||6||2||2||—||1||336||13||0||2.32||.917|
|2013–14||New York Rangers||NHL||2||0||1||—||0||71||9||0||7.61||.763|
|2003||Canada||WC||Selected, but did not play|
|Senior int'l totals||0||0||0||0||0||0||0||—||—|
- QMJHL All-Rookie Team (1995)
- Canadian Major Junior First All-Star Team (1995)
- Canadian Major Junior Goaltender of the Year (1995)
- AHL First All-Star Team (1999)
- Harry "Hap" Holmes Memorial Award (fewest goals against - AHL) (1999) (shared with Tom Draper)
- Aldege "Baz" Bastien Memorial Award (Outstanding Goaltender - AHL) (1999)
- Robert W. Clarke Trophy with the Rochester Americans (1999)
Martin's younger brother, Mathieu Biron played 250 games in the NHL as a journeyman.
On February 21, 2017, he received United States citizenship.
He sought U.S. citizenship because he had married an American citizen and has resided with her & their four children in Buffalo for several years. Because he was not a U.S. citizen, Martin could not vote in American elections and because he did not reside in Canada he could not vote in his native country.