It is time for our daily look back and the big events in National Hockey League history. Jan. 5 has given us many memories, including some NHL firsts, major personal milestones, and brand-new all-time records. Let’s get the journey back through time started!
A First Time for Everything
The Montreal Canadiens played their first game in team history on Jan. 5. 1910, a month and one day after being officially founded. They beat the Cobalt Silver Kings 7-6 in overtime, in front of 5,000 fans at the Jubilee Rink on St. Catherine St. East in Montreal. The Habs played 12 games during the inaugural season of the National Hockey Association (NHA). They went 2-10-0 and finished in the last place.
Jimmy Herberts became the first player in Boston Bruins franchise history to score a hat trick on Jan. 5, 1926, when he provided all the offense in a 3-0 win over the Pittsburgh Pirates. Goaltender Doc Stewart recorded his fourth career shutout.
An NHL game was broadcast in the United States for the first time on Jan. 5, 1957, when CBS showed a matinee between the New York Rangers and Chicago Blackhawks. Bud Palmer and Fred Cusick were on the call as the Rangers won 4-1. CBS aired Saturday afternoon games through the end of the 1959-60 season.
Motown Memories for Howe & Yzerman
The two greatest players in Detroit Red Wings history had big games on this date, including one breaking a record of the other.
Gordie Howe scored twice on Jan. 5, 1967, to lead the Red Wings to a 6-4 win over the visiting Blackhawks. This gave Mr. Hockey 700 total career goals in the regular season and playoffs combined.
Exactly three decades later, on Jan. 5, 1997, Steve Yzerman scored a goal to give him 1,300 career points in the Red Wings’ 5-5 tie with the Blackhawks. He and Howe are still the only players to score 1,300 points with Detroit.
Yzerman became the team’s all-time leader in assists on Jan. 5, 2004, in the Red Wings’ 6-0 win against the Nashville Predators. His 1,024th assist put him ahead of Howe for the most in franchise history. He finished his legendary career with 1,063 assists.
A Hull of a Day
Brett Hull became the third player to score 300 goals as a member of the St. Louis Blues on Jan. 5, 1993, in a 6-1 win over the visiting Edmonton Oilers. He finished the night with two goals, to give him 301 in 362 games with the Blues. He scored 527 goals for the team before signing with the Dallas Stars in 1998.
A decade later, on Jan. 5, 2003, Hull scored the 250th power-play goal of his career in the Red Wings’ 4-3 overtime win over the Blackhawks. He also had the game-tying goal in the third period before getting the primary assist on Jason Wolley’s overtime goal. He is currently third in all-time power-play goals with 265. Alex Ovechkin of the Washington Capitals recently passed Dave Andreychuk to become the league’s all-time leader with 275 goals on the man advantage.
Yvan Cournoyer became the fifth player in Canadiens history to score 300 goals on Jan. 5, 1974, in a 5-3 win over the Vancouver Canucks. He became the 18th player in NHL history to join the 300-goal club.
On Jan. 5, 1980, Marcel Dionne became the second player in Los Angeles Kings’ history to score 500 points. The milestone came in a 3-3 tie with the Edmonton Oilers.
Bob Gainey skated in the 1,000th game of his NHL career on Jan. 5, 1987, in the Canadiens’ 3-1 road win at the Bruins. He joined Henri Richard, Jean Beliveau, Claude Provost, and Larry Robinson as the only players in team history to play 1,000 games for the Habs.
Pittsburgh Penguins defenseman Paul Coffey scored his 300th career goal, on Jan. 5, 1991, in a 5-2 win over the New Jersey Devils. Until this night, Denis Potvin of the New York Islanders was the only NHL defenseman to score 300 goals.
Speaking of the Penguins, on Jan. 5, 1999, goaltender Tom Barrasso picked up two assists in their 5-1 defeat of the Calgary Flames. This gave him 48 career points, all assists, to make him the highest-scoring goaltender in NHL history. He still holds this record, one point ahead of Hall of Famers Grant Fuhr and Martin Brodeur.
Odds & Ends
Johnny Bucyk lit the lamp four times on Jan. 5, 1974, to lead the Bruins to a 6-2 win at the Islanders. At 38, he became the oldest player in league history to have a four-goal game. Phil Esposito did his part on this night, too, with a goal and three assists.
In just his seventh career game, rookie Joe Mullen had a memorable night on Jan. 5, 1982. He scored two goals just eight seconds apart to help the Blues beat the Minnesota North Stars 8-1, setting a team record for the fastest two goals by one player. Seven years later, on Jan. 5, 1989, he had a six-point night with four goals and two assists to lead the Flames to an 8-6 victory over the Kings.
Wayne Gretzky scored two goals and three assists on Jan. 5, 1983, in the Oilers’ 8-3 win over the Winnipeg Jets. This gave him 100 points on the season in just his 42nd game. This was the fourth season in a streak of 13 in a row with at least 100 points.
The Quebec Nordiques had a memorable night on Jan. 5, 1984, as they beat up the Bruins 8-3. All three Stastny brothers, Peter, Anton, and Marian, found the back of the net. After Marian and Peter scored in the second period, they both assisted on Anton’s third-period tally. Also, Michel Goulet extended his team-record goal-scoring streak to nine straight games. He scored 10 goals during his record-setting streak.
The Blues hired Colorado Avalanche assistant coach Joel Quenneville as their new head coach on Jan. 5, 1997, replacing interim head coach Jimmy Roberts. This move came two weeks after the team fired Mike Keenan. Quenneville became the winningest coach in franchise history with 307 victories.
Staying in St. Louis, on Jan. 5, 2019, the team recalled goaltender Jordan Binnington after a 4-3 loss on home ice to the Islanders. They found themselves with the worst record in the Western Conference with just 36 points in 39 games. Binnington went 24-5-1 in his 30 starts as the season turned around. He was in goal for all 16 of the Blues’ postseason victories, winning the first Stanley Cup in franchise history.
Happy Birthday to You
A large and talented group of 32 current and former NHL players were born on this date. The most notable Jan. 5 birthday boys are Tim Kerr (62), Basil McRae (61), Joe Juneau (54), Mike Grier (47), Kyle Calder (43), Mathieu Perreault (34), Eddie Lack (34, Matt Grzelcyk (28), Zemgus Girgensons (28), Mikhail Vorobyev (25), and Cameron York (21).
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.