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This Date in NHL History

Jan. 20: Mario Lemieux scores 50 goals in 44 games

Plus: Wayne Gretzky gets 12th NHL hat trick; Darryl Sittler reaches 1,000 points

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / NHL.com Managing Editor

THIS DATE IN HISTORY: Jan. 20

1989: Mario Lemieux becomes the second player in NHL history to score 50 goals in less than 50 games. He joins Wayne Gretzky, who's done it three times.

Lemieux, 23 and in his fifth NHL season, scores 1:18 into the Pittsburgh Penguins' 7-3 loss to the Winnipeg Jets at Winnipeg Arena when he takes a pass from Rob Brown and beats goaltender Pokey Reddick to the short side with a shot from the circle. The goal comes in Lemieux's 44th game of the season and the 46th for the Penguins.

Despite the milestone, Lemieux isn't happy after the game. "We didn't put any type of effort in out there," he says. "I don't know what's going on."

Lemieux finishes the season with 85 goals, the fourth-highest single-season total in NHL history, and his 199 points are the most scored in one season by anyone other than Gretzky. 

 

MORE MOMENTS

1946: Max Bentley scores three goals for his fourth NHL hat trick and the Chicago Blackhawks defeat the New York Rangers 9-1 in front of an NHL-record crowd of 19,749 at Chicago Stadium.

Video: Max Bentley won two scoring titles, Cup three times

 

1970: Gordie Howe scores his 10th and final goal in All-Star Game competition. His power-play goal 7:26 into the first period proves to be the game-winner in the Eastern Conference's 4-1 victory against the Western Conference at St. Louis Arena. Bobby Hull has a goal and an assist and is named the game's most valuable player.

 

1977: For the third time in NHL history (and the first time in 23 years), brothers opposed each other as coaches. Johnny Wilson's Colorado Rockies defeated Larry Wilson's Detroit Red Wings 3-1 at Olympia Stadium.

 

1982: Wayne Gretzky of the Edmonton Oilers becomes the first player in NHL history to have 12 career hat tricks before age 21. He gets his sixth hat trick of the season and 12th of his career when he scores three goals (and has two assists) in an 8-6 victory against the St. Louis Blues at Northlands Coliseum.

 

1983: Darryl Sittler becomes the 17th player in NHL history to reach 1,000 points. Sittler gets the milestone with a goal and an assist in the Philadelphia Flyers' 5-2 win against the Calgary Flames at the Spectrum. It comes one year to the day after the Flyers acquire Sittler in a trade with the Toronto Maple Leafs.

 

2003: Patrick Roy of the Colorado Avalanche becomes the first goaltender in NHL history to play in 1,000 regular-season games. Roy makes 29 saves in a 1-1 tie with the Dallas Stars at Pepsi Center.

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