Today in Hockey History: Edmonton Oilers Retire 99 of Wayne Gretzky

Wayne Gretzky

We’re normally getting ready for another hockey season, but we’re in a different world. Last Word on Hockey is still 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 October 1, featuring Wayne Gretzky.

Today in Hockey History

Wayne Gretzky Has Number Retired

1999: The Edmonton Oilers hoist the Great One’s number 99 sweater to the rafters before a game against the New York Rangers. Gretzky gets a five-minute standing ovation from the home crowd of over 17,000 fans. Many of his former teammates and coaches join Gretzky and his family at the ceremony.

Former coach Glen Sather hugs Gretzky and he’s given a portrait by former teammates Mark Messier, Jari Kurri, and Dave Semenko. The Rangers and Oilers play to a 1-1 tie at Skyreach Centre.

Other Notable Events

1956: Hall of Fame coach Dick Irvin resigns from the Chicago Black Hawks due to health reasons. General manager Tommy Ivan takes over behind the bench.

1960: Rangers forward Andy Hebenton scores the first shorthanded, overtime-goal in an All-Star Game. The goal helps the league All-Stars defeat the Montreal Canadiens, 2-1, in Hebenton’s only appearance.

1981: The New York Islanders trade Bob Lormier and Dave Cameron to the Colorado Rockies for the third pick in the 1983 NHL Draft. New York would take future Hall of Fame centre Pat LaFontaine with that choice.

1991: The Pittsburgh Penguins name Scotty Bowman as the team’s new head coach. He steps in for Bob Johnson, who is ill and dies on November 26. Bowman leads the Penguins to their second consecutive Stanley Cup.

1997: Lindy Ruff wins his coaching debut in the Buffalo Sabres‘ 3-1 victory over the St. Louis Blues. Miroslav Satan gets a goal and an assist for the Sabres in the win.

1999: The Ottawa Senators name Daniel Alfredsson as their new team captain. He serves in the role until he signs with the Detroit Red Wings in July 2013.

2009: Alex Ovechkin opens the season with two of his 50 goals in a 5-2 Washington Capitals win over the host Boston Bruins. Brooks Laich also scores a pair of goals as the Capitals go on to win the President’s Trophy.

2013: Birthday boy Johnny Oduya scores the game-winner as the Blackhawks raise their championship banner with a 6-4 win over the Capitals. Oduya’s goal comes with 6:07 left in regulation as the champions withstand a Mikhail Grabovski hat trick.

Happy Birthday to You

1946: Cliff Koroll

1965: Cliff Ronning

1967: Scott Young

1969: Igor Ulanov

1970: Alex Zhamnov

1974: Mats Lindgren

1981: Johnny Oduya

1990: Alex Chiasson