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This Date in NHL History

Nov. 18: Detroit NHL franchise plays first game

Plus: Recchi has six points for Penguins; Predators score most goals in their history

by John Kreiser @jkreiser7713 / Managing Editor


1926: Detroit's new NHL franchise, known as the Cougars, plays its first game but loses 2-0 to the Boston Bruins.

Duke Keats scores an early goal and sets up one by Archie Briden to give the Bruins a two-goal lead before the game is three minutes old. Those are the only shots to get past Detroit goalie Herb Stuart, but Boston's Charles Stewart makes 21 saves for the shutout.

The game is played before 6,000 fans at the Border Cities Arena in Windsor, Ontario. All of Detroit's home games during its first season are played in Windsor. Olympia Stadium in Detroit opens in time for the 1927-28 season.

On the same night, the Montreal Canadiens make the Forum their permanent home, though they lose 2-1 to the Ottawa Senators. The Forum remains their home for 70 years.



1930: Lorne Chabot becomes the first goalie in NHL history to start a season with three consecutive shutouts when the Toronto Maple Leafs defeat the Montreal Maroons 3-0. The three straight shutouts match Chabot's total in the other 34 games he plays that season.


1967: Defenseman Tim Horton becomes the first player to skate in 1,000 games for the Maple Leafs when he plays in Toronto's 2-2 tie against the Chicago Blackhawks at Maple Leaf Gardens. Rookie center Garry Unger scores for Toronto early in the second period to tie the game 1-1; it's the first of his 413 NHL goals.


1977: Hours after signing with the Detroit Red Wings, center Vaclav Nedomansky has three assists in his first NHL game, a 5-3 loss to the Atlanta Flames at the Omni. Nedomansky, a native of Czechoslovakia, becomes the first player to defect from Eastern Europe and play professionally in North America in 1974; he plays with the Toronto Toros and Birmingham Bulls of the World Hockey Association before joining the Red Wings as a free agent. Nedomansky is inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2019.


1979: The Vancouver Canucks defeat the Canadiens 5-2 at Pacific Coliseum for their first home victory against Montreal since entering the NHL in 1970. Glen Hanlon makes 34 saves. The victory ends Vancouver's streak of 21 home games (0-15 with six ties) without a win against the Canadiens.


1991: Mark Recchi, a 2017 inductee into the Hockey Hall of Fame, has a six-point game, including his first NHL hat trick, to help the Pittsburgh Penguins defeat the Quebec Nordiques 7-3 at Le Colisee. Kevin Stevens also scores three goals for the Penguins.


2001: Patrick Roy makes 33 saves for his third consecutive shutout and the Colorado Avalanche defeat the New Jersey Devils 2-0 at Continental Airlines Arena. It's the 56th shutout of his career. Defenseman Rob Blake scores twice for Colorado, ending a 12-game goal-scoring drought.


2010: Steven Stamkos scores three goals and sets up another, helping the Tampa Bay Lightning defeat the Philadelphia Flyers 8-7 at Wells Fargo Center. The teams combine for nine goals in the first period and five more in the second before Nate Thompson scores the game-winner 5:19 into the third. The 15 goals are the most in an NHL game since the Calgary Flames defeat the Lightning 9-6 on Dec. 13, 2007.


2014: The Nashville Predators set their single-game record for goals by defeating the Maple Leafs 9-2 at Air Canada Centre. Forward Taylor Beck scores two goals for Nashville, and defenseman Shea Weber has three assists.


2019: Alex Ovechkin scores the 254th power-play goal of his NHL career, helping the Washington Capitals defeat the Anaheim Ducks 5-2 at Capital One Arena. Ovechkin moves one behind Teemu Selanne, who's third in NHL history in power-play goals, and gets within 20 of the all-time leader, Dave Andreychuk.

In Toronto, former Dallas Stars teammates Guy Carbonneau and Sergei Zubov are among six people inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame. Also inducted are Hayley Wickenheiser and Vaclav Nedomansky as players and Jim Rutherford and Jerry York as builders.

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