Today in Hockey History: Wayne Gretzky Born in 1961

1988 Stanley Cup Final; Wayne Gretzky
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Hockey is finally back! Normally we’d be closing in on the mid-way point of the regular season, however, 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 January 26th featuring Wayne Gretzky.

Today in Hockey History

Wayne Gretzky is Born

1961: Hockey’s all-time leading scorer is born in Brantford, Ontario and dominates the sport at a young age. At age 6, he skates with 10-year-olds; at 10, he scores 378 goals. He signs with the Indianapolis Racers of the WHA, but games fame with the Edmonton Oilers and Los Angeles Kings.

He finishes with NHL records of 894 goals, 1,963 assists and 2,857 points, as well as Stanley Cup Playoff records of 122 goals, 260 assists and 382 points. Greztky goes right into the Hall of Fame in 1999.

Other Notable Events

1966: Detroit Red Wings great Gordie Howe is the first to play in 1,300 NHL games. The Red Wings come up short in a 4-3 loss to the host New York Rangers.

1975: Montreal Canadiens forward Guy Lafleur gets the only four-goal game of his career in a 7-2 rout of the Pittsburgh Penguins. Bob Gainey hands out four assists, including three of Lafleur’s goals.

1985: Gretzky celebrates his 24th birthday with three goals for his 33rd career hat trick in a 6-3 win over Pittsburgh. It’s also the third time Gretzky has reached 50 goals in less than 50 games.

1991: Mario Lemieux returns from a 50-gam absence due to a back injury with three assists against the Quebec Nordiques. Penguins defenceman Larry Murphy also gets his 500th assist in a 6-5 win at Le Colisee.

Gretzky scores three goals again as the Kings beat the Vancouver Canucks 5-4 for his 48th hat trick of his career. He reaches the 30-goal mark for the 12th consecutive season.

1997: Lemieux scores four goals in the third period of a 5-2 win over the Habs at the Forum. Super Mario ties a record for

2016: San Jose Sharks forward Joe Thornton becomes the 33rd player to reach 1,300 points in league history. He assists on Joe Pavelski‘s power-play goal in a 6-1 home win over the Colorado Avalanche.

2019: Sidney Crosby scores four goals to earn All-Star Game MVP honours as the Metropolitan Division wins. Crosby scores two goals and has an assist for the Metropolitan Division in a 10-4 victory against the Atlantic Division in the semifinals. He follows it up with two goals and three assists in a 10-5 win over the Central.

Happy Birthday to You

1893: Frank Nighbor

1925: Vic Lynn

1931: Glen Skov

1950:Fred Barrett; Ivan Hlinka

1957: Dale McCourt

1961: Wayne Gretzky

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