October 8 NHL History
1946: Gordie Howe begins his NHL journey when he signs a contract with the Detroit Red Wings.
Howe, an 18-year-old from Floral, Saskatchewan, makes his NHL debut eight days later. He finishes his first season with 22 points (seven goals, 15 assists) in 58 games. By 1949-50, he’s a 35-goal scorer and begins a run of 20 seasons when he finishes in the top five in the NHL scoring race. He wins the Art Ross Trophy six times and plays on four Stanley Cup-winning teams with Detroit.
Howe is 52 when he finally retires on June 4, 1980, holding the NHL record for games played (1,767), goals (801) and points (1,850).
1963: Montreal Canadiens rookie John Ferguson gets into a fight on the first shift of his NHL debut, but also scores two goals and has an assist in a 4-4 tie against the Boston Bruins. Ferguson gets his Gordie Howe Hat Trick while playing on a line with Jean Beliveau and Bernie Geoffrion.
1971: Craig Patrick becomes the first third-generation player in NHL history when he plays for the California Golden Seals in a 4-4 opening-night tie against the visiting Los Angeles Kings. His father (Lynn Patrick) and grandfather (Lester Patrick), are members of the Hockey Hall of Fame.
1975: The longest consecutive games played streak in NHL history begins when Doug Jarvis of the Canadiens plays the first of 964 straight games. Jarvis starts the streak with Montreal, continues it with the Washington Capitals and ends it with the Hartford Whalers on Oct. 10, 1987.
1983: Regular-season overtime returns to the League for the first time since 1942. After Bob Nystrom ties the game with 56 seconds remaining in the third period, Bob Bourne scores in OT to give the visiting New York Islanders an 8-7 victory against the Washington Capitals.
1993: The Mighty Ducks of Anaheim play their first NHL game and lose to the Red Wings 7-2 at Arrowhead Pond (now Honda Center). Defenseman Sean Hill scores the first goal in Mighty Ducks history at 4:13 of the second period to make it 3-1, but Detroit scores the next four before Troy Loney’s third-period power-play goal for Anaheim. The Mighty Ducks finish their first NHL season 33-46-5.
2014: Antti Niemi makes 34 saves in the San Jose Sharks’ 4-0 victory against the Los Angeles Kings at Staples Center. Niemi is the first goaltender to shut out the defending Stanley Cup champions in their season-opening game since Turk Broda of the Toronto Maple Leafs does it against the Bruins on Nov. 8, 1941.