THIS DATE IN HISTORY: April 4
2004: Brad Fast makes the only NHL game of his career one to remember.
Not only does the 24-year-old Carolina Hurricanes defenseman score a goal, he gets what proves to be the last game-tying goal in NHL history. Fast scores at 17:34 of the third period to give the Hurricanes a 6-6 tie with the Florida Panthers at Office Depot Center.
Fast, recalled from Lowell of the American Hockey League for Carolina's season finale, takes a pass from Rod Brind'Amour and beats Florida goaltender Roberto Luongo to get the Hurricanes even after they've blown a 4-0 lead.
With the adoption of the shootout after the 2004-05 season is cancelled by a lockout, Fast's goal stands as the last tying goal in an NHL game.
1921: The Ottawa Senators become the first NHL team to win the Stanley Cup in back-to-back seasons when they defeat the Vancouver Millionaires of the Pacific Coast Hockey Association 2-1 in the decisive fifth game of the Final. Jack Darragh scores twice for the Senators.
1944: Maurice Richard makes his debut in the Stanley Cup Final and has an assist on the game-winning goal in the Montreal Canadiens' 5-1 victory against the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 1. He finishes with five goals and seven points in Montreal's four-game sweep.
1961: Montreal's hopes for a sixth straight Stanley Cup come to an end when the Canadiens lose 3-0 to the Chicago Blackhawks in Game 6 of the Semifinals. The 4-2 series loss marks the first time since 1950 that the Canadiens fail to qualify for the Final. The Blackhawks go on to defeat the Detroit Red Wings for their first championship since 1938.
1971: The final night of the 1970-71 season is a memorable one for two NHL legends.
Jean Beliveau plays the 1,125th and final regular-season game of his career, all with Montreal, in a 7-2 road loss to the Boston Bruins. Beliveau retires a few weeks later after helping the Canadiens win the Stanley Cup.
Gordie Howe appears in his 1,687th regular-season game, all with the Red Wings, in the New York Rangers' 6-0 victory at Madison Square Garden. Howe also announces his retirement and is elected to the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972. However, he comes back to play six seasons in the World Hockey Association before returning to the NHL in 1979-80, when he plays 80 regular-season and three playoff games for the Hartford Whalers, then retires for good.
1973: The Blackhawks become the first team in NHL history to have two players score three goals in the same playoff game. Pit Martin and Dick Redmond each get hat tricks in a 7-1 win against the St. Louis Blues at Chicago Stadium. Stan Mikita has five assists.
1976: The California Seals defeat the Los Angeles Kings 5-2 at the Oakland Coliseum in the final NHL game played in the San Francisco Bay Area until the San Jose Sharks join the League in 1991. Jim Moxey scores into an empty net at 19:58 of the third period for the final goal in Seals history. They move to Cleveland for the 1976-77 season.
1979: Montreal's Ken Dryden becomes the first goaltender to win at least 30 games in each of his first seven NHL seasons. Dryden gets his 30th and final win of the 1978-79 season in the Canadiens' 4-1 victory against the Red Wings at the Forum. He retires a few weeks later after helping the Canadiens win the Stanley Cup for the fourth consecutive year.
1987: Denis Potvin of the New York Islanders scores two goals in a 6-6 tie with the Buffalo Sabres at Nassau Coliseum to become the first defenseman (and 21st player) in NHL history to score 1,000 career points. The milestone comes when he scores the game-tying goal with 17 seconds left in the third period. Potvin retires after the 1987-88 season with 1,052 points, the most by a defenseman at the time.
1990: Los Angeles Kings defenseman Larry Robinson takes the ice in the Stanley Cup Playoffs for an 18th consecutive season, an NHL record. The visiting Kings defeat the Calgary Flames 5-3 in the opener of their Smythe Division Semifinal series. Robinson, a member of six Stanley Cup-winning teams during his 17 seasons with the Montreal Canadiens, adds two more years to his streak. He finishes his career in 1992 having never missed the playoffs during his 20 seasons in the NHL. Red Wings defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom equals Robinson's record run in 2012, his final NHL season.
2001: Two future Hockey Hall of Famers each reach the 50-goal mark for the second time in their careers. Joe Sakic gets No. 50 when he scores the only goal for the Colorado Avalanche in a 1-1 tie against the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim at Pepsi Center. Jaromir Jagr scores Nos. 50 and 51 for the Pittsburgh Penguins in a 4-2 home win against the Tampa Bay Lightning.
2003: Columbus Blue Jackets goalie Marc Denis sets an NHL single-season record for minutes played in a 5-5 tie against the Red Wings at Nationwide Arena. Denis finishes the game with 4,451 minutes, surpassing the mark of 4,443 set by Martin Brodeur of the New Jersey Devils in 1995-96. He finishes the season having played 4,510:55 -- but Brodeur regains the record in 2003-04 and establishes the current record of 4,696:33 in 2006-07.
2017: The Bruins qualify for the playoffs for the first time since 2014 by defeating the Tampa Bay Lightning 4-0 at TD Garden. Tuukka Rask makes 28 saves and David Pastrnak scores two goals for the Bruins, who win their sixth in a row.