This Day. Rocket’s 500th

500th Goal, "Rocket" Richard, Ville Marie Wax Museum, Mont… | Flickr

500th Goal, “Rocket” Richard, is immortalized by the Ville Marie Wax Museum, Montreal. He did score against Chicago Goaltender Glenn Hall in 1957 but it was on a slap shot from 20 feet away | Flickr

On this date in 1957, Maurice Richard became the first NHL player to score 500 regular-season goals.

The Rocket did it in 863 games, which is the ninth-fastest ever. Only Wayne Gretzky (575 games, lol), Mario Lemieux (605), Mike Bossy (647), Brett Hull (693), Alex Ovechkin (801), Phil Esposit (803), Jari Kurri (833) and Bobby Hull (861) were quicker.

The 500-goal club currently has 45 members. Only two are still active in the NHL: Ovechkin (who’s up to eighth all time with 706) and Patrick Marleau (25th at 562). The closest to joining next is Sidney Crosby, who’s at 462.

It was on March 18, 1945 that Richard became the first NHL player to score 50 goals in a season, on his way to 544 during his illustrious career, in the Canadiens’ 4-2 win that night over the Boston Bruins. And it came late in the 50th and final game of the regular season It was his 87th NHL goal.

With a file from CBC’s The Buzzer

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Filed under Athletes, History, Hockey

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