Today in Hockey History: March 12

The man known as the “Golden Jet” made numerous memories on this date in National Hockey League history. Also, a handful of impressive streaks were extended, and one best goal-scorers to ever play the game made some recent history. Let’s take our daily trip back in time to relive the best moments that March 12 has given us.

A Gigantic Date for Bobby Hull

There is a statue of Hull outside of the United Center because of dates like this during his career. On March 12, 1961, he scored the 100th goal of this career during the Chicago Blackhawks’ 6-2 loss to the Montreal Canadiens. He was the third-fasted player to hit the 100-goal milestone after Maurice Richard and Jean Beliveau.

Five years later, Hull became the first player to score 51 goals in a season, breaking the single-season record shared by Richard and Bernie Geoffrion. His 51st goal helped the Blackhawks beat the New York Rangers 4-2.

Bobby Hull
March 12 was a special date for Hull. (THW Archives)

On March 12, 1967, Hull scored his 49th goal of the season and added an assist in a 5-0 win over the Toronto Maple Leafs as the Blackhawks clinched a first-place finish for the regular season for the first time. Goaltender Glenn Hall earned his 68th career shutout as Chicago became the last Original Six team to win the Prince of Wales Trophy, which was given to the regular-season champion.

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Two years later, in 1969, Hull extended his team-record goal-scoring streak to 10 straight games in a 4-1 loss to the visiting Oakland Seals.

Hull scored the 610th and final goal of his NHL career on March 12, 1980, and added an assist to help the Hartford Whalers to a 4-4 tie with the Detroit Red Wings. This was also the final game in Detroit for Gordie Howe, who was also in Hartford’s lineup this night. He took the opening faceoff with his sons Mark and Marty on his wings and later picked up an assist.

We’re Going Streaking

Goaltender Gerry Cheevers extended his NHL-record unbeaten streak to 28 straight games (21-0-7), on March 12, 1927, in the Boston Bruins’ 4-4 tie with the Pittsburgh Penguins. Johnny Bucyk led the scoring with three assists.

Two years later, Bucyk’s teammate, Bobby Orr, picked up an assist in the Bruins’ 4-0 win over the Buffalo Sabres. This gave him 100 points for the fifth straight season, making him the first player in NHL history to do so.

Bobby Orr
Orr extended his streak of 100-point seasons on this date. (Photo by Bruce Bennett Studios/Getty Images)

The Canadiens extended their NHL-record road undefeated streak to 23 straight games (14-0-9), on March 12, 1975, with a 3-3 tie with the Toronto Maple Leafs. This streak ended in their next road game, a 2-1 loss at the Philadelphia Flyers on March 23, 1975.

Guy Lafleur picked up four assists as the Canadiens, on March 12, 1977, in the Canadiens’ 5-1 win over the Blackhawks. This extended their team-record home winning streak to 10 games and their NHL-record home undefeated streak to 29 (24-0-5).

The Edmonton Oilers extended their NHL record by playing in their seventh straight overtime game on March 12, 2004, a 4-3 loss to the visiting Vancouver Canucks. Geoff Sanderson scored the winning goal with less than a minute left in the extra time.

Two Big Nights for Alex Ovechkin

The “Great 8” is one of the greatest goal-scorers the game has ever seen and he has a legit shot at scoring 900 goals in his career. On March 12, 2018, Alex Ovechkin became the 20th player in NHL history to score 600 career goals with a pair of tallies in the Washington Capitals’ 3-2 overtime win over the Winnipeg Jets. He hit this milestone in 990 games, joining Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux and Brett Hull as the only players to score 600 goals in fewer than 1,000 games.

Alex Ovechkin Washington Capitals
Alex Ovechkin, Washington Capitals (Jess Starr/The Hockey Writers)

One year later, both Ovechkin and Evgeni Malkin, the first two picks of the 2004 NHL Entry Draft, had milestones in the Pittsburgh Penguins’ 5-3 victory against the Capitals. Malkin’s second assist of the game gave him 1,000 points in his career. A short time later, Ovechkin got his 1,200th career point by assisting on John Carlson’s power-play goal. They became just the second duo taken first and second overall in a draft to score 1,000 points in the NHL.

Odds & Ends

The St. Louis Eagles beat the Red Wings 3-2, on March 12, 1935, in their final home game of the season. The team folded at the end of the 1934-35 season. Fans in St. Louis had to wait until 1967 for the NHL to return when the Blues joined the league.

Denis Potvin became the first defenseman in New York Islanders history to score 20 goals in a season, on March 12, 1975, in a 5-3 loss at the Rangers.

Denis Potvin
Potvin was one of the best offensive defensemen in NHL history. (Photo by B Bennett/Getty Images)

Darryl Sittler became the ninth player in Maple Leafs’ franchise history to score 200 goals on this date in 1977. He also had two assists in a 6-0 win over the visiting Red Wings. Rookie goaltender Mike Palmateer recorded his fourth career shutout.

The Oilers became just the second team in NHL history to use six different goaltenders in one season, on March 12, 1980, when Ron Low made his debut in a 6-3 win at the Quebec Nordiques. He was Edmonton’s fifth different goaltender used in their last five games.

Brent Sutter became the third player in Islanders history to score 100 points in a season, on March 12, 1985, with an assist in a 6-5 win at the Blues. This was the only 100-point season of his career.

Joe Nieuwendyk scored twice to become the second rookie in NHL history to get 50 goals on March 12, 1988, joining Mike Bossy, who had 53 in 1977-78 for the Islanders. Hakan Loob scored a hat trick and added three assists to lead the Calgary Flames to a 10-4 win over the Buffalo Sabres. The Flames trailed 4-0 after one period but scored five goals in both the second and third periods to win.

The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim beat the Red Wings 2-1 on March 12, 1997, to extend their team-record undefeated streak to nine games (6-0-3). Jari Kurri scored his 594th goal, giving 1,369 career points and tying Bucyk for 11th place on the NHL’s all-time scoring list.

Ken Hitchcock earned his 200th career coaching victory on March 12, 2000, when the Dallas Stars beat the Blues 4-2. It took him 358 games to hit this plateau. Exactly 15 years later, he became just the fourth head coach to win 700 regular-season games when he led the Blues to a 1-0 win over the Flyers. In a fun fact, the first four members of the 700-club – Scotty Bowman, Al Arbour, Joel Quenneville and Hitchcock – all had a stint behind the bench in St. Louis.

The San Jose Sharks tied a team record with their 35th win of the season, on March 12, 2001, as rookie goaltenders Evgeni Nabokov and Miikka Kiprusoff combined for the second shared shutout in team history, a 3-0 victory against the visiting Canadiens.

Artem Chubarov of the Vancouver Canucks became the first player in league history whose first four goals were all game-winners when he scored the opening goal in a 5-0 win over the Nashville Predators. He scored 25 goals in his NHL career with eight game-winners.

Defenseman Mathieu Schneider picked up his 500th career point, on March 12, 2003, with an assist in his first game with the Red Wings. Tomas Holmstrom added a goal and two assists in Detroit’s 3-2 win at the Phoenix Coyotes.

Noah Clarke scored his first NHL goal, on March 12, 2007, in Los Angeles’ 5-1 win over the Oilers. The native La Verna, CA, became the first player born in southern California to score a goal for the Kings.

Marc-Andre Fleury became the 13th goaltender in league history to 400 games, on March 12, 2018, by leading the Vegas Golden Knights to a 3-2 win at the Flyers.

Minnesota Wild rookie Kirill Kaprizov recorded his first NHL hat trick against the Coyotes on March 12, 2021, when he scored all three in the third period of his team’s 4-0 victory. He became the second Wild rookie to do it (Justin Fontaine, Jan. 9, 2014).

On that same night, the Colorado Avalanche set a new franchise record when they allowed fewer than 30 shots in their 15th straight game when they shut out the Los Angeles Kings 2-0 and only allowed 18 shots on goal. The previous one was held by the 2000-01 Avs when they did it in 14 straight on their way to a Stanley Cup.

Patrick Kane became the Blackhawks’ second-leading scorer in franchise history with a three-assist effort in a 6-3 victory over the Senators on March 12, 2022. He has since departed the Windy City and is plying his trade with the Rangers.

On March 12, 2022, then-Red Wings defenseman Marc Staal played his 1,000th NHL game, a milestone his brothers Eric and Jordan have also reached. They became the first trio of brothers to play 1,000 games in NHL history.

Happy Birthday to You

A total of 24 current and former NHL players share a birthday today. The most recognizable names of this lot are Deron Quint (47), Brent Johnson (46), Douglas Murray (43), Mikko Koivu (40), Evgenii Dadonov (34), Byron Froese (32) and Mikhail Maltsev (25).

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