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This Date in NHL History

Dec. 5: Gretzky gets 1,400th point

Plus: Shore plays final game with Bruins; Tony Esposito makes first NHL start

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / Managing Editor


1986: Wayne Gretzky becomes the fifth player in NHL history with 1,400 points when he has three assists in the Edmonton Oilers' 4-2 victory against the Pittsburgh Penguins  at the Civic Arena.

Gretzky, 25, reaches 1,400 points in 580 games, faster than any of his predecessors: Gordie Howe, Marcel Dionne, Phil Esposito and Stan Mikita. The milestone comes nine months to the day after he gets point No. 1,300 against the Los Angeles Kings.

He needs 40 games before reaching 1,500 points on March 11, 1987.

Video: Wayne Gretzky all-time leader in goals, points



1939: Eddie Shore plays his final game as a member of the Boston Bruins and scores the winning goal in a 2-1 victory against the New York Americans at Boston Garden. The defenseman, a four-time Hart Trophy winner, is traded to the Americans on Jan. 25, 1940, retires at the end of the season and is inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1947.

Video: Eddie Shore was Bruins' first great defenseman


1968: Tony Esposito makes his first NHL start when the Montreal Canadiens face the Bruins at Boston Garden and finishes with 33 saves in a 2-2 tie. The only Boston player to beat the rookie goalie is his older brother; Phil Esposito opens the scoring in the first period and ties the game midway through the third. Tony Esposito plays 13 games with Montreal before being taken by the Chicago Blackhawks in the intraleague draft on June 11, 1969.

Video: Tony Esposito won Vezina, Calder in 1969-70


1991: Mario Lemieux has two goals and four assists, and Kevin Stevens gets his fourth hat trick in 10 games, in the Penguins' 8-0 victory against the San Jose Sharks at the Cow Palace. It's the biggest road win in Penguins history. The first-year Sharks have to use three goalies; Brian Hayward comes out of the stands after starter Jeff Hackett and backup Arturs Irbe leave with injuries.

Exactly one year later, the Penguins visit the Sharks again; this time, Lemieux scores a goal and has six assists in a 9-4 victory.


2001: Mike Keenan becomes the second man in NHL history to coach seven different teams when the Florida Panthers defeat the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-0 in his first game as their coach.


2002: Michal Handzus of the Philadelphia Flyers becomes the second player in NHL history to score an overtime goal on a penalty shot. After being taken down from behind by New York Rangers defenseman Tom Poti with 36.7 seconds left in OT, Handzus lifts a backhand shot over goalie Dan Blackburn to give the Flyers a 3-2 victory against the visiting Rangers.


2014: Sergei Gonchar scores for the Canadiens in a 4-3 loss to the Chicago Blackhawks at United Center. The 40-year old defenseman becomes the oldest player ever to score a goal for Montreal in the regular season or Stanley Cup Playoffs. Before Gonchar, that distinction is held by defenseman Mathieu Schneider, who's 39 years and 301 days old when he scores against the Bruins at TD Garden in Montreal's next-to-last game of the 2008-09 season.


2017: Jacob Markstrom gets his first NHL shutout in his 129th game (115 starts) when the Vancouver Canucks defeat the Carolina Hurricanes 3-0 at Rogers Arena. He makes 30 saves. The record for most games without a shutout is 132 by Eldon "Pokey" Reddick, who plays for three teams from 1986-94.

2019: Jonathan Toews becomes the first modern-era member of the Chicago Blackhawks to score a regular-season overtime goal in Boston. Toews scores 54 seconds into OT to give the Blackhawks a 4-3 victory against the Bruins at TD Garden. He ends Boston's eight-game winning streak with the 14th overtime goal of his career, the most in team history and the first in Boston since Red Hamill on Feb. 3, 1942.

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