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This Date in NHL History

March 11: Esposito first in NHL history to score 60 goals in season

Plus: Gretzky reaches 1,500 career points; Montreal Forum hosts final game

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / NHL.com Managing Editor

THIS DATE IN HISTORY: March 11

1971: Phil Esposito of the Boston Bruins becomes the NHL's all-time single-season leader in goals when he scores his 59th and 60th in a 7-2 victory against the Los Angeles Kings at the Forum in Inglewood, California.

Esposito breaks Bobby Hull's single-season record of 58 when he scores No. 59, beating Denis DeJordy at 7:03 of the first period. He becomes the first NHL player to score 60 goals in a season when he beats DeJordy again at 15:40 of the second period.

Teammate Johnny Bucyk surpasses another Hull record by scoring two goals, giving him 99 points and surpassing his single-season mark for left wings.

The Bruins also become the first NHL team to win 50 games in one season.

Video: Memories: Esposito tops Hull's record with 59th goal

 

MORE MOMENTS

1918: The first all-NHL Stanley Cup playoff game takes place when the Toronto Arenas host the Montreal Canadiens in the first of their two-game, total-goal series. Toronto defeats the Canadiens 7-3 in front of 4,000 fans at Mutual Street Arena. Harry Meeking scores three goals for Toronto.

1930: The Bruins extend their home winning streak to an NHL-record 20 games by defeating the Chicago Blackhawks 4-3 at Boston Garden. Cooney Weiland scores three goals and assists on the other for Boston.

1934: The Montreal Maroons set an NHL record by scoring four goals in the 10-minute overtime period, giving them a 7-3 victory against the New York Rangers at Madison Square Garden. Russ Blinco scores two of the four goals for the Maroons. Under the overtime format in use, teams play the full 10 minutes in the extra period rather than sudden death.

1937: Milt Schmidt scores the first two goals of his NHL career to help the Bruins defeat the Blackhawks 6-2 at Chicago Stadium. The 19-year-old future Hall of Famer scores twice in a span of 10:15 during the first period.

 

1951: Terry Sawchuk sets an NHL record for most wins in a season with his 39th in the Detroit Red Wings' 7-0 victory against the Blackhawks at Chicago Stadium. The shutout is the 10th of the season for the rookie goalie. George Gee fuels the offense with three goals and two assists.

 

1986: Mike Bossy scores four goals to reach 50 for an NHL-record ninth straight season. Bossy also has an assist in the New York Islanders'8-4 win against the Calgary Flames at Nassau Coliseum. It's the 36th hat trick of Bossy's NHL career.

 

1987: Wayne Gretzky of the Edmonton Oilers scores a goal and sets up three others, all in the third period, to reach 1,500 points. The milestone comes in his 620th NHL regular-season game, a 6-3 victory against the Red Wings at Northlands Coliseum.

 

1996: The Canadiens close the Montreal Forum by defeating the Dallas Stars 4-1. Andrei Kovalenko of the Canadiens scores the final goal in the Forum's 72-year history. The game is followed by a ceremony that sees each former Montreal captain pass a torch to the next in line, ending with a handoff to Pierre Turgeon. The loudest cheers are for Maurice Richard, who receives an ovation that lasts nearly 10 minutes.

Video: Montreal Forum closes; Maurice Richard's epic ovation

 

1998: Patrick Roy of the Colorado Avalanche became the NHL's leader in victories among active goalies with 376, breaking a tie with Grant Fuhr of the St. Louis Blues. He does it in person, making 21 saves in Colorado's 3-2 win against the Blues in Denver.

 

2001: Colorado defenseman Ray Bourque becomes the third player in NHL history to appear in 1,600 games. Bourque has no points and two shots on goal in 29:55 of ice time as the Avalanche defeat the visiting Dallas Stars 3-2.

 

2002: The Carolina Hurricanes set an NHL record by playing their sixth consecutive tie at home. The Hurricanes lead 3-2 until Calgary's Craig Conroy scores against Arturs Irbe with 1:19 remaining in the third period, and the game ends 3-3.

 

2018: Christopher Gibson of the Islanders becomes the 21st different NHL rookie goalie to make at least 50 saves in a game. Gibson makes 50 saves in New York's 5-2 win against the Calgary Flames at Scotiabank Saddledome. He's the first Islanders rookie to make at least 50 saves in a game since Billy Smith makes 55 on Nov. 22, 1972, and the first in the NHL since 2009-10.

 

2019: Leon Draisaitl has two assists before scoring 35 seconds into overtime to give the Edmonton Oilers a 3-2 win against the New York Rangers at Rogers Place. The three-point night extends his point streak to 14 games, the longest in NHL history among German nationals.

On the same night, another player from Germany, goalie Thomas Greiss, makes 31 saves for his fifth shutout of the season in the Islanders' 2-0 victory against the Columbus Blue Jackets at Nassau Coliseum.

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