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Skrastins Breaks Ironman Mark For Defensemen

by Staff Writer / Colorado Avalanche

Click here to view pictures of the ceremony in the Avalanche Photo Gallery

Karlis Skrastins appeared in his 487th consecutive game on Thursday night against the Atlanta Thrashers, setting a new NHL record for consecutive games played by a defenseman. He broke the mark of 486 set by the late Hall of Famer Tim Horton over 39 years ago. The Avalanche organization honored Skrastins' achievement with a special pre-game ceremony before the game.

Skrastins' streak began on Feb. 21, 2000 against Dallas when he was a member of the Nashville Predators. He played in the final 23 games of that year, all 82 games in each of the next five seasons and every Avalanche contest (54) so far in 2006-07. The last time Skrastins missed a game was Feb. 18, 2000.

"This is a very special achievement that clearly demonstrates a great deal of commitment and determination to both the Avalanche organization and the game of hockey," said Avalanche Executive Vice President and General Manager Francois Giguere. "To be able to play in 487 consecutive games, especially the way he plays the game, is a remarkable feat that no other defenseman in the history of the game has matched. He truly deserves this special recognition."

Horton's previous record of 486 games was established from Feb. 11, 1961 to Feb. 4, 1968. The overall NHL record for consecutive games played at any position is 964 set by Doug Jarvis over 13 seasons from 1975 to 1987.

Skrastins owns the longest active "ironman" streak in the league. In fact, he and Vancouver's Brendan Morrison (484 in-a-row) are the only current players with a streak of at least 400 consecutive games. The last NHL player with a games played streak of more than 487 was Mark Recchi, who skated in 570 straight contests from 1991-1998.

First Game/Last Game
Karlis Skrastins
Nsh, Col
Feb. 21, 2000 to present
Tim Horton
Feb. 11, 1961 to Feb. 4, 1968
Kevin Lowe
Jan. 28, 1981 to March 7, 1986
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