One of the greatest goaltenders the National Hockey League had ever seen officially ended his playing career on this date. Jan. 29 has also seen a plethora of personal milestones, including the No. 1,000 reappearing in different forms. Let’s buckle into THW’s time machine for our daily trip throughout the decades.
Brodeur Hangs Them Up
No matter who you argue is the greatest goaltender in the history of the game, there is little doubt that Martin Brodeur’s name comes up in the debate. On Jan. 29, 2015, a 42-old-year Brodeur officially announced his retirement after seven appearances with the St. Louis Blues. Of course, his previous 21 seasons with the New Jersey Devils made him a legend at the position.
Brodeur retired with a record of 691-397-49-105 to go along with a career 2.24 goals-against average, .912 save percentage, and 125 shutouts in 1,266 games. He is the league’s all-time regular-season leader in wins, shutouts, games, and minutes played. In the postseason, he is first with 204 career starts and 24 shutouts, while his 113 playoff victories are second behind Patrick Roy’s 151. He led the Devils to three Stanley Cup championships in 1995, 2000, and 2003. He won the Calder Trophy in 1994 for being voted the season’s top rookie, and he won four Vezina Trophies, given to best goaltender as voted by the hockey writers.
1,000 & Beyond
Hall of Famer Gilbert Perreault played in his 1,000th career game on this date in 1984. He scored two goals and added an assist in the Buffalo Sabres’ 7-3 win over the Pittsburgh Penguins. He became the first player to dress in 1,000 games in franchise history. This milestone came exactly 13 years after scoring the first hat trick in team history on Jan. 29, 1971.
Bryan Trottier became the 19th player in NHL history to score 1,000 points on Jan. 29, 1985, in the New York Islanders’ 4-4 tie with the Minnesota North Stars. His two goals helped the Islanders come all the way back from being down 4-0 to earn a point. His 1,000th point came via a shorthanded goal, the first time that had happened in the league.
On Jan. 29, 1998, Luc Robitaille became the sixth left wing in NHL history to score 1,000 career points. He hit this big milestone with two assists to help the Los Angeles Kings beat the visiting Calgary Flames 5-3.
Steve Yzerman picked up an assist on Jan. 29, 2004, in the Detroit Red Wings’ 5-2 win over the Devils. This gave him 1,702 NHL points, moving ahead of the legendary Mario Lemieux for sixth place on the all-time points list.
Francis’ Big Date
Ron Francis finished his great career with 1,798 points, the fifth-most in NHL history. Jan. 29 was a big date in helping him hit the top five on the all-time scoring list.
Starting on this date in 1998, he became the 11th player to score 1,400 career points when he had two assists in the Penguins’ 4-2 win at the Boston Bruins.
Related – Ron Francis’ All-Time Best Goals
Three years later, on Jan. 29, 2001, Francis became just the fifth player in NHL history to score 1,600 points. He had three assists in the Carolina Hurricanes’ 5-2 win over the Tampa Bay Lightning, who lost their 10th straight game.
One year later, he had an assist for his 50th point of the season as the Hurricanes tied 2-2 with the Sabres in Carolina. This made him just the second player to score at least 50 points in 21 different seasons.
A Trio of Milestones in ‘97
Jan. 29, 1997, was a big night for three veterans of the league. Starting in Denver, where Patrick Roy and the Colorado Avalanche beat the Los Angeles Kings 6-3. This was the 335th career victory for Roy, tying him with Gump Worsley for the eight-most in NHL history.
Al MacInnis scored his 250th career goal and added an assist in the St. Louis Blues 4-0 road shutout at the Toronto Maple Leafs. He became the seventh defenseman in league history to score 250 goals. He retired with 340 goals, the second-most among blueliners behind Paul Coffey.
Finally, Rod Brind’Amour took the ice for the 288th straight contest to set the Philadelphia Flyers’ team record for consecutive games played, breaking the old record set by Rick MacLeish. He scored the opening goal in a 2-1 road victory at the Washington Capitals.
Odds & Ends
Maurice Richard had two goals on Jan. 29, 1953, in the Montreal Canadiens’ 5-2 win at the New York Rangers. This made him the first player to score at least 20 goals in each of his first 10 NHL seasons.
A massive blizzard in upstate New York on Jan. 29, 1977, made it very difficult for the Sabres to travel to Montreal. Only 14 players could make the trip to Montreal, but despite the shorthanded lineup, they managed to earn a point in a 3-3 tie with the Canadiens.
One year later, on Jan. 29, 1978, Bobby Clarke became the first player to score 250 goals as a member of the Flyers in a 3-3 tie at the Red Wings.
Rick Middleton became the third player in Bruins’ franchise history to score 300 goals on Jan. 29, 1984, in a 7-2 loss on home ice to the rival Canadiens.
Hartford Whalers’ goaltender Mike Liut recorded his 200th career victory on Jan. 29, 1987, with a 6-3 win over the Bruins. He became the 28th NHL goaltender to join the 200-win club.
Jeremy Roenick scored two goals and added an assist on Jan. 29, 1995, in the Chicago Blackhawks’ 6-3 win at the Kings. His three-point night gave him 500 in his career in 430 games.
Rookie defenseman Zdeno Chara scored his first NHL goal and added an assist on Jan. 29, 1999, to lead the Islanders’ offensive attack in a 4-4 tie with the visiting Phoenix Coyotes.
Glen Murray scored twice, including in overtime, on Jan. 29, 2004, to give the Bruins a 2-1 win over the Islanders. These two tallies gave him 500 points in his NHL career.
On the same night, John Tortorella recorded his 100th career NHL coaching victory as the Lightning beat the Penguins 5-1. This was the first of many milestones in his career as he later became the first U.S.-born head coach to win 500 and then eventually 600 games.
On Jan. 29, 2015, Oliver Ekman-Larsson made history during the Coyotes’ 3-1 win at the Maple Leafs. He tied the game with a shorthanded goal just five seconds into the third period. This was the fastest shorthanded goal at the start of a period ever scored.
Happy Birthday to You
Three Hall of Famers headline a group of 37 players born on this date; the late Joe Primeau and Pat Quinn, and Dominik Hasek, who turns 57 today. Other notable players from this large bunch include Billy Harris (70), Doug Risebrough (68), Mike Foligno (63), Sean Burke (55), Tim Gleason (39), Thomas Greiss (36), Kevin Shattenkirk (33), Jack Roslovic (25), Joel Eriksson Ek (25) and the late Wayne Stephenson.
Greg Boysen has been writing about the Chicago Blackhawks since 2010 and has been a site manager for both FanSided and SB Nation. He has been published in The Hockey News and was fully credentialed for the 2013 Stanley Cup Final. Among his various roles with The Hockey Writers are covering the Blackhawks, the AHL, writing the daily “Today in Hockey History” column, serving as a copy editor, and appearing and hosting multiple YouTube shows, including Blackhawks Banter. He is credentialed with the Chicago Wolves, Rockford IceHogs, and Milwaukee Admirals, while also being a regional scout for the NAHL. And, just because his plate isn’t full enough, Greg hosts trivia in the Chicago area two nights a week. For interview requests or to provide topic suggestions, follow Greg on Twitter and reach out.