Welcome back to another edition of Throwback Thursday!
This week in Edmonton Oilers history, Wayne Gretzky set a couple of records, and notched his first five goal game.
Gretzky breaks NHL goal scoring record
This week in 1982 (Feb. 24), Wayne Gretzky scored his 77th goal of the year, setting an NHL record. He went on to score over a dozen more pushing the record to 92.
The previous record had been set by Phil Espositio, who scored 76 goals in 78 games that year.
Gretzky went on to score 87 goals in 1983-84 to take the reins of the second spot, too. Since then, a few players have come close to breaking Gretzky’s goal scoring record. Brett Hull scored 86 in 1990-91, Mario Lemieux scored 85 in 1988-98, and Alexander Mogilny scored 76 in 1992-93.
This week in 1980 (Feb. 24), Gretzky became the first player in league history to score 100 points under the age of 20 years old. He piled on 37 more points before the end of that season but he didn’t win the Calder as the league’s top rookie, despite leading the league in points and assists.
That Calder went to Ray Bourque, who scored 65 points in 80 games with the Boston Bruins.
Gretzky did, however, take home the Hart Memorial Trophy as the league’s MVP. That year, Gretzky was ineligible for the Calder having already played a full season in the WHA before joining the NHL.
First five goal game
This week in 1981 (Feb. 18), Gretzky notched his first five goal game of his career. It came in a 9-2 win over the St. Louis Blues and Gretzky’s first goal of the game came at the 4:44 mark of the second period.
Come the third, Gretzky scored four goals straight over a 10 minute span pouring salt on the Blues’ wound. One at the 5:49 mark, another nine seconds later, then he notched a short-handed tally at the 8:07 mark, before scoring his final goal at the 15:47 mark.
He went on to score three more five goal games, all with the Oilers.