Thursday, January 26, 2012

Today in history: January 26

January 26 in Indianapolis hockey history
1958: A double-hat trick for the Chiefs. Pierre Brillant and Bob Bowness each tally three goals in a 7-2 victory over the Toledo Mercurys.

Vic Lynn: A speedy winger, he played for the Capitals in 1943-44. He had four goals and five assists in 32 games. He made his debut with the Rangers, briefly, the previous year, and then came to the Red Wings during World War II. He had several callups to the NHL, and is the only player in NHL history to skate for all six Original Six teams. His best NHL season was in 1947-48, when he had 34 points with the Maple Leafs, for whom he played from 1946-50, and was part of the KLM line with Howie Meeker and Teeder Kennedy. He played in the NHL -- with a few stops in the AHL in-between -- through 1954, and then played senior hockey through 1963. He won three Stanley Cups in 1947, 1948 and 1949. A native of Saskatoon, he was born in 1925, and passed away in 2010.
Wayne Gretzky: A man who needs no introduction, "The Great One" famously began his pro hockey career in Indianapolis with a fledgling Racers outfit that would fold a couple of months later. Gretzky played eight games with the Racers, and scored his first professional goal at Market Square Arena against Edmonton's Dave Dryden. He had three goals and three assists with the Racers in eight games before being sold to Edmonton in a trade that also sent Racers Peter Driscoll and Ed Mio to the Oilers. He would finish that season with 46 goals and 110 points, and the highest-scoring career in hockey history was on. When the Oilers made the jump to the NHL the next year, Gretzky spent the next 20 seasons rewriting the pro hockey record books. He had at least 110 points in each of his first 14 pro seasons, and the number likely would've been 16 straight if not for an injury in 1992-93. He had eight straight 50-goal seasons at the start of his NHL career, with 92 goals and 212 points in 1981-82, 71 goals and 186 points the following year, and 87 goals and 205 points in 1983-84, the year the Oilers won their first of four Stanley Cups in five years with Gretzky. Two more 200-point seasons followed. After winning the fourth Cup in 1988, he was traded to the Los Angeles Kings, where he helped build hockey in Southern California during seven and a half seasons. He had an amazing playoff year in 1993, where he had 40 points in 24 games to lead the Kings to the Stanley Cup Finals. He played briefly with St. Louis in 1995-96, then played his final three years with the Rangers before retiring in 1999, his 21st pro season. In 1,567 NHL/WHA games, he had 940 goals and 2,027 assists. His 2,967 points is a pro hockey record, as are the other marks. He also had 132 goals and 270 assists in 221 playoff games. He appeared in the Stanley Cup Finals six times, winning four in 1984, 1985, 1987 and 1988. He was a nine-time Hart Trophy winner as NHL MVP, 10-time Art Ross Trophy winner as the league's leading scorer, two-time Conn Smythe Trophy winner as postseason MVP and five-time Lady Byng Trophy winner as the league's most gentlemanly player. Since retirement, he has been a team owner, coached the Phoenix Coyotes and has remained an ambassador for the game. A native of Brantford, Ont., he is 51.
Dean Malkoc: Ice defenseman for 62 games in 1994-95. Malkoc had four points and 193 PIMs in his stint with the Ice. He had played four years in the Devils organization before joining the Ice, then spent much of the next four years in the NHL with the Canucks, Bruins and Islanders. He had four points in 116 NHL games, as well as 299 PIMs. He is now a scout with the Boston Bruins. A native of Vancouver, he is 42.
Jason Selleke: Ice forward for three seasons, from 2000-02, then again in 2003-04. In 195 games, he had 48 goals and 69 assists, as well as 376 PIMs. In the interim, the Ohio State graduate played with UHL Fort Wayne. After leaving the Ice, he played six more years, five in the UHL and one in Italy. A native of St. Clair Shores, Mich., he is 34.
Jarrett Thompson: Amateur "playoff-only" signee for the Ice in 2001. He joined the Ice after his fifth year in the WHL, and played three playoff games. He played three years in the ECHL, split with two years in Canadian university play. A native of Calgary, he is 32.
Eric Miller: One of a handful of Hoosiers to play with the Ice, the Carmel resident played 50 games for the blue and white from 2004-07. He had 12 goals and nine assists, all but two of those points coming in 2006-07, when he played 31 games with the Ice. He also had six playoff goals in seven games as the Ice made a deep playoff run in 2007. Born in Villa Hills, Ky., he is 26.
Jay Clark: Goaltender who played 11 games for the Ice in 2005-06. He primarily played that year and the next in the NAHL, then played collegiately at Army. He finished his college career in 2011 as the Cadets' starting goaltender for three seasons. A native of Baudette, Minn., he is 25.

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