One of the most important buildings in the history of the National Hockey League hosted its first-ever game on this date. Also, Los Angeles and St. Louis both saw their fair share of memorable moments. In addition, a handful of goaltenders had their time in the spotlight while numerous personal milestones were reached.
Magic Moments at the Forum
The world-famous Montreal Forum officially opened its doors for the first time, on Nov. 29, 1924, as the Montreal Canadiens beat the Toronto St. Patricks 7-1. Billy Boucher treated the crowd of 9,000 fans with a hat trick, including the opening one in the first minute of the game.
However, the Forum would not become the regular home for the Canadiens until the start of the 1926-27 season. They played their home games at the Mount Royal Arena while the Montreal Maroons called the Forum home. The two teams shared the iconic arena until the Maroons folded in 1938. The Canadiens played at the Forum until 1996 before moving to Bell Centre.
Six years later, on Nov. 29, 1930, George Hainsworth became just the second goaltender in team history to win 100 career games, as the Canadiens beat the visiting Boston Bruins 3-2.
Jean Beliveau scored his sixth career hat trick, on Nov. 29, 1958, in a 6-2 Canadiens’ win against the Detroit Red Wings.
On Nov. 29, 1981, Mario Tremblay scored a goal and added four assists in the Habs’ 6-3 win over the Hartford Whalers. Doug Risenbrough chipped in with his second career hat track and Pierre Mondou and a goal and three assists for the home team.
Royal Memories in LA
Bob Nevin became the 22nd player in NHL history to score 300 career goals, on Nov. 29, 1975, when he scored a goal to lead the Los Angeles Kings to an 8-3 win over the visiting Buffalo Sabres.
Two years later on, Nov. 29, 1977, Rogie Vachon became the first goaltender to record 150 victories with the team. The milestone came in a 4-2 win over the visiting Washington Capitals. He registered 171 wins before signing with the Red Wings in 1978, which were the most in franchise history until Jonathan Quick came along.
Charlie Simmer scored his 200th NHL goal, on Nov. 29, 1983, and added two assists in Kings 6-5 home loss to the Winnipeg Jets.
Exactly one year later, on Nov. 29, 1984, the Kings beat up on the visiting Vancouver Canucks 12-1. They set a new franchise record, at the time, with six power-play goals and 12 goals overall.
Finally, on Nov. 29, 1990, veteran John Tonelli scored a goal for his 800th career point in a 4-4 tie at the St. Louis Blues.
No Singing the Blues Today
The Blues made one of hockey’s biggest trades, on Nov. 29, 1967, when they dealt forwards Ron Atwell and Ron Stewart to the New York Rangers for center Red Berenson and defenseman Barclay Plager. St. Louis was the overwhelming winner of this trade. Berenson scored 172 goals and 412 points in his 519 games with the team. Plager played his entire 10-season career with the Blues. Both players served as team captain at different points in their careers.
Later that night, the Blues beat the Kings 3-2, giving legendary head coach Scotty Bowman his first career victory. Jimmy Roberts scored twice to help St. Louis end its seven-game losing streak. This was the first of 1,244 regular-season victories for Bowman, the most in NHL history. Exactly 24 years later, on Nov. 24, 1991, he coached in his 1,300th game, leading the Pittsburgh Penguins to a 9-3 win at the Philadelphia Flyers.
Bernie Federko scored the seventh hat trick of his career, on Nov. 29, 1983, in a 5-5 tie with the New York Islanders. Unfortunately for the Blues, Brent Sutter matched Federko’s hat track, the second of his career.
The late Pavol Demitra racked up his third NHL hat trick, on Nov. 29, 2002, and added an assist in the Blues’ 7-2 win over the Calgary Flames.
The Puck Stops Here
Alec Connell became the first goaltender in NHL history to record 70 career shutouts, on Nov. 29, 1932, in the original Ottawa Senators 2-0 win over the visiting Red Wings. He finished his career with 81 shutouts, which are still tied for the sixth-most all-time.
Future Hall of Famer Tony Esposito made his NHL debut, on Nov. 29, 1968, in the Canadiens’ 5-4 loss at the Oakland Seals. He came in to replace Vachon and gave up the final two goals to be hung with the loss. He played in 13 games for the Habs before being claimed off of waivers by the Chicago Blackhawks the following offseason and the rest, as they say, is history.
On Nov. 29, 1979, rookie goalie Pete Peeters extended his unbeaten streak to 10 games (8-0-2) with a 6-4 win versus the Minnesota North Stars. The Flyers extended their team-record undefeated streak to 19 straight games (16-0-3) with the win.
Exactly seven years later, on November 29, 1986, another rookie netminder in Philadelphia had a big night. Ron Hextall became the first goaltender in Flyers’ history to be credited with two assists in the same game as he beat the Islanders 6-5.
Dominik Hasek recorded his first shutout with the Buffalo Sabres, and second overall in his career, on Nov. 29, 1993, with a 3-0 win at the Toronto Maple Leafs. This marked seven straight trips to Toronto without a loss as the Sabres improved to 6-0-1 at the Maple Leafs.
Guy Hebert picked up his 11th career shutout, on Nov. 29, 1996, and earned the first goaltender assist in the history of the Mighty Ducks of Anaheim. Paul Kariya was the offensive hero with a goal and assist in the 2-0 win over the visiting Blackhawks.
Mike Richter earned his 23rd career shutout, and his first in nearly three years, on Nov. 29, 2001, as the Rangers won 5-0 over the visiting Carolina Hurricanes. He got one more shutout before retiring in 2003.
Ray Emery made 27 saves to pick up his first career shutout, on Nov. 29, 2005, with a 4-0 win over the Canadiens. He also became the first goaltender to win nine games in a row to start his career. This was already his third victory over the Habs in his young career. He picked up his first three wins and the end of the previous season before going 6-0-0 to start 2005-06.
Roberto Luongo earned his third straight shutout, on Nov. 29, 2007, by beating the Columbus Blue Jackets 2-0. He set the Canucks franchise record by going 193:56 without allowing a goal, beat the previous mark of 184:20 set by Ken Lockett in 1975.
Odds & Ends
Andy Bathgate scored his 229th career goal, on Nov. 29, 1962, in the Rangers’ 5-0 win at the Red Wings. This broke Bill Cook’s record for the most goals in team history. His 272 goals are still good enough for fourth all-time in New York. Gump Worsley earned the 23rd shutout of his career on this night.
On Nov. 29, 1978, Bjorne Skaare became the first Norwegian-born player to appear in an NHL game when he suited up for the Red Wings in a 2-2 tie against Colorado Rockies. This was his one and only NHL game.
Current Devils head coach Lindy Ruff scored his first career hat trick, on Nov. 29, 1981, as the Sabres beat the Islanders 5-2.
On the same night, Paul Coffey scored two goals and added three assists in the Edmonton Oilers’ 10-2 blowout of the Winnipeg Jets. Wayne Gretzky added a goal and three assists in the offensive attack.
Three years later, playing in his 416th NHL game, Gretzky picked up his 599th and 600th career assists as the Oilers won 4-2 at the Boston Bruins.
A pair of Sabres hit personal milestones, on Nov. 29, 1992, in their 5-2 victory in Ottawa. Pat Lafontaine scored to goals to give him 350 in his career. Alexander Mogilny lit the lamp, as well, to hit the 100-goal plateau.
Current Colorado Avalanche general manager Joe Sakic scored his 350th career goal, on Nov. 29, 1995. He also added an assist in the Avs’ 4-3 defeat to the Devils.
Wendel Clark scored a goal, on Nov. 29, 1997, in the Maple Leafs’ road loss at the Canucks. This was his 287th goal to give him an even 500 points in his career.
On that same night in Alberta, Theoron Fleury scored an unassisted shorthanded goal in overtime to put the Calgary Flames over the Mighty Ducks 3-2. This was his 315th goal, making him the highest-scoring player in team history, passing Joe Nieuwendyk.
On Nov. 29, 1998, the Blackhawks beat the Oilers 3-2 in Edmonton, for the 2,000th all-time win since the franchise entered the league in 1926.
Marian Hossa scored a goal, on Nov. 29, 2002, to extend his point-scoring streak to a franchise-record 12 straight games. He broke the old record of 11 games set by Alexei Yashin during the 1998-99 season, during the Senators’ 5-2 win over the Capitals.
Chris Chelios picked up an assist, on Nov. 29, 2003, in the Red Wings’ 2-1 win at the Blues. He became the 11th defenseman in league history to score 900 points. He finished his Hall of Fame career with 948 points in 1,651 games.
On that same night, Peter Bondra scored his 19th career hat trick to move into fourth place on the NHL’s career scoring list for European-born players as the Capitals beat the Blue Jackets 5-3.
Speaking of European-born players, on Nov. 29, 2018, Finland’s Patrik Laine scored a pair of goals in the Jets’ 6-5 win versus the Blackhawks. At 20 years and 224 days, he was the fourth-youngest player in NHL history to score 100 regular-season goals. Gretzky, Jimmy Carson and Brian Bellows were the three players to be younger when they joined the 100-club.
Happy Birthday to You
Nov. 29 has been a busy day for NHL birthdays with 26 of them. The most notable players of this large group include Bob Berry (77), Neal Broten (61), Brad May (49), Tanner Glass (37), Matt Irwin (33), Jared Spurgeon (31), Andrej Suster (30), Anton Lindholm and the late Jack Walker, Georges Mantha and Demitra.