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Accuracy Shooting: 3 Top Moments

Looking back at the three most memorable moments from the NHL's accuracy shooting contest

by Dan Marrazza @GoldenKnights /

When it comes to the NHL Accuracy Shooting competition, the magic number is four. As in four targets.

With 15-inch targets placed in each of the net's four corners (upper left, upper right, lower left, lower right), the objective in this contest is to hit all four targets as quickly as possible.

In this contest's early years, players were allotted a maximum of eight shots, with most players electing to exclusively utilize wrist shots, which although not as hard as a slap shot, increases the chances of accuracy.

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Using this strategy, a perfect score of 4/4 was achieved four times. This led to a tweaking of the format in 2011, where instead of being limited by a certain number of shots, the modus operandi is to hit four targets as quickly as possible, regardless of the number of attempts.

Operating under both of these formats, there have been numerous memorable moments.

Here are our top three.

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1. Ray Bourque sets the standard

In the early years of the NHL's accuracy shooting contest, Ray Bourque was the unquestioned kingpin, winning the title in 1990, 1992 and 1993.

Enhancing the longtime Boston Bruins defenseman's legacy was that in '92 and '93, he didn't miss a single target, going 4/4 in back to back years.

To put that in perspective, only two other players (Mark Messier and Jeremy Roenick) have ever gone 4/4.


Watch: Youtube Video


Bourque went on to win or tie for first in five straight accuracy shooting contests from 1997-2001, finishing his career that spring with eight accuracy shooting titles on his Hall of Fame resume.


2. Daniel Sedin reinvents the standard

Throughout their careers, identical twins Daniel and Henrik Sedin have had almost parallel careers as members of the Vancouver Canucks.

An example of the similarity of the Sedins' careers is that Daniel enters the All-Star break with 969 career points in 1,193, while minutes-older brother Henrik has 1,002 points in 1,216 games.

One area of variance for the Sedins is that only Daniel, a winger, has distinguished himself in the NHL's accuracy shooting contest.

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In 2011, Daniel hit all four targets in 7.3 seconds, which is the fastest a player has hit four targets under the current contest rules.


Watch: Youtube Video


3. Mark Messier Interrupts A Dynasty

In the 1990s, when Ray Bourque was nearly unbeatable in this contest, you almost had to be perfect to have a chance to dethrone the Bruins mainstay.

The legendary Mark Messier did just that in 1996, going 4/4, taking the title in memorable fashion.


Watch: Youtube Video


Jeremy Roenick, in 2004, is the only other player to ever shoot 4/4.


All-Time Hardest Shot Winners


1990: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins (4/7)
1991: Mark Messier/New York Rangers (4/6)
1992: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins (4/4)
1993: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins (4/4)
1994: Brendan Shanahan/St. Louis Blues (4/5)
1996: Mark Messier/New York Rangers (4/4)
1997: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins (4/7)
1998: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins, Peter Forsberg/Colorado Avalanche & Brendan Shanahan/Detroit Red Wings (4/6) 1999: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins, Keith Tkachuk/Phoenix Coyotes & Jeremy Roenick/Phoenix Coyotes (4/6)
2000: Ray Bourque/Boston Bruins & Viktor Kozlov/Florida Panthers (4/5)
2001: Ray Bourque/Colorado Avalanche (4/6)
2002: Jarome Iginla/Calgary Flames & Markus Naslund/Vancouver Canucks (4/6)
2003: Jeremy Roenick/Philadelphia Flyers (4/6)
2004: Jeremy Roenick/Philadelphia Flyers (4/4)
2007: Eric Staal/Carolina Hurricanes & Marian Hossa/Atlanta Thrashers (4/5)
2008: Tomas Kaberle/Toronto Maple Leafs (4/5)
2009: Evgeni Malkin/Pittsburgh Penguins (3/4)
2011: Daniel Sedin/Vancouver Canucks (7.3 seconds)
2012: Jamie Benn/Dallas Stars (10.204 seconds)
2015: Patrick Kane/Chicago Blackhawks (13.529 seconds)
2016: John Tavares/New York Islanders (12.294 seconds)

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