Today in Hockey History: Los Angeles Kings Wayne Gretzky Passes Gordie Howe

Wayne Gretzky

We’re normally starting up 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 15, featuring Wayne Gretzky.


Today in Hockey History

Wayne Gretzky Becomes All-Time Leading Scorer

1989: The Los Angeles Kings centre passes Gordie Howe as the league’s all-time leading scorer. He assists on Bernie Nicholls‘ goal to tie Howe with 1,850 points. However, the Edmonton Oilers keep taking the lead.

Gretzky scores with 53 seconds left in regulation to tie the game at four and pass Howe. The game is paused for 15 minutes in a ceremony with the Gretzky and Howe families. The Great One caps the night with the overtime-winner to give the Kings a 5-4 victory.

Other Notable Events

1955: Maurice Richard scores twice and Henri Richard gets the game-winner in the Montreal Canadiens 4-1 win over the New York Rangers.

1964: Ted Lindsay is the fourth player to appear in 1,000 career games in the Detroit Red Wings 5-3 loss to the Toronto Maple Leafs. Only Howe (1,189), Bill Gadsby (1,129) and Red Kelly (1,122) have played in more games to that date.

1970: Yvan Cournoyer scores two goals and Phil Myre gets his first career shutout in a 3-0 Habs victory over the Buffalo Sabres. Buffalo was playing its first game at the Memorial Auditorium.

1972: Chicago Blackhawks forward Stan Mikita becomes the sixth player to reach 1,000 career points. Mikita assists on a goal by Cliff Koroll in a 3-1 loss to the St. Louis Blues.

1983: Toronto and Chicago combine for five goals in a span of 1:24 that sets a record for the fastest five goals in history. The Leafs win the game, 10-8, despite the Hawks scoring three of the five goals.

1988: Mario Lemieux records two goals and six assists as the Pittsburgh Penguins rout the Blues, 9-2. Rob Brown gets his first career hat trick in the victory.

2009: Red Wings defenceman Nicklas Lidstrom is the first European-born blueliner to reach 1,000 points in a 5-2 win over the Kings. The Swede nets two assists in a game at the Joe Louis Arena.

2018: Toronto’s Auston Matthews is the fifth player to get multiple points in his team’s first seven games. Matthews gets two assists in a 4-1 victory over the Kings. He joins Lemieux and Kevin Stevens of the Penguins (1992-93), Mike Bossy of the New York Islanders (1984-85) and Gretzky with the Oilers (1983-84).



Happy Birthday to You

1935: Willie O’Ree

1957: Rocky Saganiuk

1991: Brock Nelson

1997: Julien Gauthier

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