Today in Hockey History: Toronto Maple Leafs Mats Sundin Becomes Top Swede

Mats Sundin
TORONTO - DECEMBER 10: Mats Sundin #13 of the Toronto Maple Leafs celebrates his game winning goal against the Pittsburgh Penguins during the NHL game at Air Canada Centre on December 10, 2002 in Toronto, Ontario. The Maple Leafs defeated the Penguins 4-2. (Photo By Dave Sandford/Getty Images/NHLI)

During the NHL’s hiatus, we at the Last Word on Hockey are going to look back at each date’s historical significance to the game. We’ll remember the moments that shaped the sport of hockey that happened on this day. Here’s our look at this date in hockey history for April 6th, featuring Mats Sundin.

Today in Hockey History

Mats Sundin Becomes Highest-Scoring Swedish Player

2002: The Toronto Maple Leafs forward scores in a 2-2 tie with the Florida Panthers. Sundin nets his 395th career goal to become the highest-scoring player for Sweden. He scores late in the second period to break the record held by Tomas Sandstrom.

Sundin would continue playing until the end of the 2008-09 season where he finishes out with the Vancouver Canucks. He’d end up with 564 goals at the end of his career, which is still the most of any player from that country.

Other Notable Events

1926: Clint Benedict helps the Montreal Maroons win their first Stanley Cup. Montreal would beat the Victoria Cougars of the WHL, 2-0, in the final series involving an non-NHL team.

1945: Frank McCool of the Leafs and the Detroit Red Wings Harry Lumley are the first rookie goalies to face each other in the final. Toronto would win Game 1, 1-0, in the first of three straight shutouts by McCool.

1969: Johnny Bower at 44 years, four months and 28 days is the oldest goalie to play in a postseason game. The Maple Leafs would lose, 3-2, to the Boston Bruins at Maple Leaf Gardens.

1974: Denis Potvin of the New York Islanders gets a goal and three assists to set the rookie record in goals, assists and points for a defenceman. The Isles would beat the Minnesota North Stars, 4-2, as Potvin would win the Calder Trophy.

1980: The great Gordie Howe would score in his final NHL game with the Hartford Whalers in a 5-3 win over the Red Wings. It would be the 801st NHL goal and would be the most until Wayne Gretzky would break the record.

1986: Gretzky wins the Art Ross Trophy for the six straight year with his 163rd assist of the season. The Edmonton Oilers centre would break his own record for points with 215 in a 3-2 win over the Canucks.

2003: The Colorado Avalanche win their ninth straight division title in a 5-2 win over the St. Louis Blues.

2019: The Tampa Bay Lightning tie the single-season record for wins with 62 in a 6-3 win over Boston. Tampa ties the 1995-96 Detroit squad for victories in a season.

Happy Birthday to You

1965: Gerald Diduck

1970: Olaf Kolzig

1973: Tyler Wright

1975: Hal Gill

1982: Travis Moen

1985: Clarke MacArthur

1997: Pavel Zacha


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