Some of the greatest players in National Hockey League history had big moments on this date. The numbers 50 and 100 have come up repeatedly, there were some major assists given out, and memories were made behind the bench. Let’s take our daily trip back in time to look at the best March 5 has had to offer us through the decades.
50s and 100s
Bobby Hull scored twice on March 5, 1969, in the Chicago Blackhawks’ 4-4 tie with the New York Rangers, to become the first player in NHL history to have four 50-goal seasons. He finished the 1968-69 season with 58 goals, setting a new league record. At the time, only two other players ever had 50-goal seasons, Montreal Canadiens legends Maurice Richard and Bernie Geoffrion.
Marcel Dionne became the first player in Los Angeles Kings’ history to have a 100-point season on March 5, 1977, when he scored in a 3-3 tie with the Pittsburgh Penguins. He also became the first player in NHL history to have a 100-point for two different teams after putting up 121 points while with the Detroit Red Wings in 1974-75. Eight years later, he picked up an assist in a 6-0 win over the Penguins to become the first NHL player with eight 100-point seasons.
Jari Kurri scored his fifth career hat trick on March 5, 1983, to give him 100 goals in his career. Wayne Gretzky scored two goals and added three assists in the Edmonton Oilers’ 6-3 road win at the Toronto Maple Leafs.
Mike Bossy became the first NHL player to have eight straight 50-goal seasons, on March 5, 1985, in a 5-4 New York Islanders’ loss to the visiting Philadelphia Flyers.
Mark Recchi scored his 35th goal of the season on March 5, 1991, to give him 100 points for the first time in his career. Paul Coffey added three assists as the Penguins beat the Vancouver Canucks 4-1 for their team-record 10th straight win at the Civic Arena.
Paul Kariya scored his 100th NHL goal on March 5, 1997, and picked up an assist in the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim’s 4-1 win over the Ottawa Senators. The victory extended their unbeaten streak to six games (4-0-2).
A Trio of Major Assists
Phil Esposito was credited with an assist on both Boston Bruins goals, on March 5, 1969, in their 2-2 tie with the Red Wings. This gave the Hall of Famer 63 assists, setting a new NHL single-season record.
On March 5, 1991, Gretzky became the first NHL player to record 1,400 career assists when he gets three of them during the Kings’ 3-3 draw at the Washington Capitals. To this date, no other player in league history has even hit 1,300 assists.
Steve Yzerman picked up his 36th assist of the season, on March 5, 2000, in the Red Wings’ 5-3 road win at the Dallas Stars. This gave him 927 helpers in his career, breaking the Blackhawks’ Stan Mikita record for the most assists by a player who spent his entire career with one team.
Quebec Nordiques Have a Huge Night
Michel Goulet scored his third career hat trick, including his 50th goal of the season, on March 5, 1983, in a 10-3 Nordiques’ win over the visiting Hartford Whalers. He became the second player in team history to score 50 goals in a season.
Peter Stastny scored twice, on March 5, 1989, including his 350th NHL in an 8-2 Nordiques’ win at the Buffalo Sabres.
One year later, the Nordiques traded Goulet and Greg Millen to the Blackhawks for Everett Sanipass, Daniel Vincelette, and prospect Mario Doyon. Goulet played the final 276 games of his career with Chicago and scored 92 goals and 207 points.
The Nordiques ended their 33-game road winless streak (0-25-8) in grand fashion, on March 5, 1992, by beating the Hartford Whalers 10-4. Mats Sundin had five goals and two assists, while Owen Nolan contributed with a goal and five assists.
The Ups & Downs of Being a Coach
The Maple Leafs fired head coach Pat Burns on March 5, 1996, and named Nick Beverley as the interim coach for the remainder of the season. His firing came after eight straight losses. He went 133-107-41 during his tenure behind Toronto’s bench.
On that same night, Terry Crisp became the first coach in NHL history to win 100 games with an expansion team when the Tampa Bay Lightning won 2-0 over the visiting Blackhawks.
Bruce Boudreau became the fastest head coach to win 400 regular-season games on March 5, 2016, as he led the Ducks to a 3-2 win over the Kings. The win was their team-record 11th in a row and improved their record to 18-1-1 over their last 20 games.
Barry Trotz became the fourth head coach in league history to win 800 regular-season games on March 5, 2019, when the Islanders beat the Senators 5-4 in a shootout. He joined Scotty Bowman, Joel Quenneville and Ken Hitchcock in the 800-win club.
Odds & Ends
Gordie Howe scored twice and added three assists on March 5, 1953, to lead the Red Wings to a 7-1 win against the Rangers. This big performance gave him 86 points, breaking his own league record for the most points in a season.
Brad Park became the third defenseman in NHL history to have a 20-goal season on March 5, 1972, when he scored in the Rangers’ 6-1 win versus Canucks. He joined Flash Hollett and Bobby Orr as the only blueliners to net 20 goals in a season.
Jacques Lemaire scored twice and added two assists on March 5, 1977, as the Canadiens tied an NHL record for the longest home unbeaten streak, at 27 games (22-0-5), with a 7-2 win over the Rangers.
Ray Bourque had a goal and two assists, on March 5, 1980, in the Bruins’ 5-3 victory at the Red Wings. This gave him 51 points on the season, the most by a rookie in franchise history.
On March 5, 1992, Pat LaFontaine became the first player in NHL history to score a goal against 21 teams in one season when he connected for the Sabres in a 5-3 at the Minnesota North Stars.
Joe Mullen played in his 1,000th career game on March 5, 1996, and goaltender Bill Ranford appeared in NHL game No. 500 in the Bruins lost 5-3 at the Islanders.
Teemu Selanne scored to extend team-record 15-game point streak on March 5, 1999, as the Ducks beat the Nashville Predators for their franchise-record-tying sixth consecutive victory. Two years later, Anaheim traded Selanne to the Sharks for forward Jeff Friesen, goaltender Steve Shields and future considerations.
Mike Modano tied Brian Bellows for the most goals in Dallas Stars’ franchise history by scoring his 342nd, on March 5, 2000, in a 5-3 loss to the Red Wings. He also added an assist for his 800th career point.
Brian Leetch scored twice, on March 5, 2002, including the winning goal in overtime to give the Rangers a 3-2 win at the Minnesota Wild. This was his sixth career regular-season overtime goal, the most by any defenseman in NHL history.
Danny Markov scored the 10,000th goal in Flyers history, on March 5, 2004, in a 5-3 win over the visiting Senators. The two teams combined to set an NHL record with 419 penalty minutes, and the Flyers set a record for one team with 213.
On this day in 2014, the Lightning traded Martin St. Louis and a 2015 conditional second-round pick (Oliver Kylington) to the Rangers for Ryan Callahan, a 2015 first-round pick (Anthony Beauvillier), a conditional 2014 second-round pick (Josh Ho-Sang), and a seventh-round pick. St. Louis is still Tampa Bay’s all-time leader in assists (588) and points (953).
Sidney Crosby became the 48th player in NHL history to score 1,200 career points on March 5, 2019, when he scored a goal and added two assists in the Penguins’ 3-2 overtime win against the Florida Panthers.
Happy Birthday to You
The late Bruins legend and Hall of Famer Milt Schmidt headlines a group of 18 players born on this date. The best of the rest includes Paul Gardner (65), Shjon Podein (53), Bryan Berard (44), Paul Martin (40), Barret Jackman (40) and the late Bill Thomas.
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.