December 10, 2015

Memories of Wayne Gretzky's 51 Game Point Streak

Patrick Kane scored an empty net goal against Nashville on Tuesday night to extend his impressive consecutive games point scoring streak to 23 games. Only Henrik Zetterberg (24 games) and Sidney Crosby (25) have done better this century.

Of course, the National Hockey League all time record for consecutive games with at least one point scored is 51 games, by Wayne Gretzky of course. 

You could argue the record should actually be 61 games.

Gretzky's 51 straight games was from the start of the 1983-84 season. But he ended the previous season with a 10 game point scoring streak. Shouldn't the record be considered 61 regular season games?

Here is a few more interesting numbers from Gretzky's amazing streak and season:

  • Twice Gretzky scored 8 points in a single game during the streak - 3 goals, 5 assists against New Jersey and 4 goals and 4 assists against Minnesota. He also had 7 points against Winnipeg, 6 against Quebec and 5 points on seven occasions (plus twice more after the streak ended).
  • Gretzky barely extended the streak to 44 games. In that 44th game he scored an empty net goal with just two seconds left in the game. It was his only point of that night.
  • Gretzky scored his 50th goal of the season in game 42. He had his 100th point in game 34!
  • The Oilers would win their first Stanley Cup that spring. Including playoff goals, Wayne Gretzky scored 100 goals that season.
Gretzky's record streak came to an end against the Los Angeles Kings on January 28th, 1984. Markus Mattsson was the goaltender.

Had his record breaking streak not been on the line, Gretzky almost certainly would have stopped playing. About a week before the streak stopped Gretzky suffered a shoulder bruise courtesy of a clean but heavy hit by LA's Dave Taylor. But The Great ONe soldiered on, extending the streak by three games (including a 2 goal, 4 point, 1 armed performance against Vancouver in game 50). After getting shutout in game 52, Gretzky did sit out the next six games to recover from the injury. But, as the league's biggest draw, Gretzky still participated in the annual All Star Game first!

By the way, the Oilers went just 1-5 and were outscored 38-19 in the six games Gretzky missed!

Gretzky returned from the injury and scored points in 20 out of the 22 remaining games. He finished that season with an unthinkable 87 goals, 118 assists and 205 points in 74 games. In the amazing 51 game scoring streak he registered 61 goals and 92 assists for 153 points!

1 comment:

alex said...

Wayne Gretzky was amazing, just amazing.

I´m so happy to have been a young kid enjoying hockey while Gretzky (Mike Bossy etc.. ) were playing.

Those were awesome times.