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NHL Centennial

This Week in Centennial History

Wayne Gretzky passes Gordie Howe for combined points lead; Devils dress four players from Soviet Union @NHLdotcom

It was an historic week in the NHL with Washington Capitals forward Alex Ovechkin passing the career goal total of Maurice Richard on Monday and then scoring his 1,000th career point on Wednesday.

As part of the League's Centennial Celebration, will take look back at memorable events each week. Here are some Centennial highlights for the week of Jan. 8-14:

Jan. 8, 1950: Goaltender Terry Sawchuk of the Detroit Red Wings plays his first NHL game, in place of injured starter Harry Lumley, in a 4-3 loss to the Boston Bruins at the Olympia. Sawchuk plays seven games before Lumley returns, winning three times and getting the first of his 103 NHL shutouts. He takes the starting job the following season.


Jan. 9, 2004: Goaltender Brian Boucher of the Phoenix Coyotes sets a modern NHL record with his fifth consecutive shutout, a 2-0 victory against the Minnesota Wild at Xcel Energy Center. Boucher remembers the record-breaking streak as if it happened yesterday.


Jan. 10, 1989: Wayne Gretzky adds another record when he passes Gordie Howe for most combined points (regular season and playoffs) in NHL history when he has four assists for the Los Angeles Kings against the Edmonton Oilers. His 2,011 points are one more than Howe.


Jan. 11, 2015: Teemu Selanne becomes the first player to have his number retired by the Anaheim Ducks. His No. 8 is raised to the rafters at Honda Center. Selanne scores 457 of his 684 NHL goals for the Ducks and helps them win the Stanley Cup in 2007.


Jan. 12, 1992: The New Jersey Devils make history by becoming the first NHL team to dress four players born in the Soviet Union.


Jan, 13, 1979: The struggling Los Angeles Kings put recent call-up Charlie Simmer on left wing with center Marcel Dionne and right wing Dave Taylor. The trio, soon known as the "Triple Crown Line," becomes one of the NHL's most prolific scoring lines. Simmer looks back at the anniversary of the line's beginnings and his own quest to make the NHL.


Jan. 13, 2006: Alex Ovechkin scores all three goals for the Washington Capitals in a 3-2 overtime victory against the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim at Honda Center. He gives Washington the victory by beating goaltender Jean-Sebastien Giguere at 3:04 of overtime.



Jan. 14, 1988: In his final NHL season, Denis Potvin of the New York Islanders becomes the first defenseman in NHL history to score 300 goals. Potvin looks back on his milestone.


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