During the NHL’s hiatus, we at the Last Word on Hockey are going to look back at each date’s historical significance to the game. We’ll remember the moments that shaped the sport of hockey that happened on this day. Here’s our look at this date in hockey history for April 2nd, featuring Paul Coffey.
Today in Hockey History
Paul Coffey Sets Defencemen Goal Record
1986: The Edmonton Oilers blueliner breaks Bobby Orr‘s record for most goals by a defenceman in an 8-4 win over the Vancouver Canucks. Coffey would score twice to tie and then surpass the Boston Bruins great.
He’d score a power-play goal three days later against the Calgary Flames to set the standard at 48 goals. That record has yet to be broken since.
Other Notable Events
1939: Mel Hill of the Bruins closes out the Stanley Cup semifinal series with the New York Rangers with his third overtime goal in Game 7. Hill scores eight minutes into the third overtime to seal the win.
1969: Ted Irvine of the Los Angeles Kings sets a record for fastest OT playoff-goal in 19 seconds in a 5-4 victory over the Oakland Seals. Irvine is the father of professional wrestler, Chris Jericho.
1977: The Canadiens break the record for most wins in a season with 59 in an 11-0 drubbing of the Washington Capitals. Montreal would win two nights later in Washington to go 60-8-12 for 132 points, which is still an NHL record.
Five years later, Gretzky breaks the record for most hat tricks with 34. The Oilers would skate to a 6-4 win over the Kings.
2016: Lindy Ruff wins his 700th game behind the bench as the Stars top the Kings, 3-2.
Happy Birthday to You
1902: Alex Smith
1950: Buster Harvey
1957: Dwight Foster
1979: Brad Ference
1996: Christian Jaros