Gretzky, Coffey and... Gagner?
"The Great One" Wayne Gretzky had accomplished the feat twice in his career, once in 1983 and again in 1984, while Hall of Fame defenseman Paul Coffey also registered an eight-point night in 1986 with the Oilers.
The 22-year-old Gagner was in on all eight of those goals Thursday night, with four goals and four assists. Video highlights of the legendary night can be seen here.
Just when it's getting that time of year again when you hear his name amidst trade rumors, Gagner went out and totally redeemed himself, if I may borrow a line from Dumb & Dumber.
In fact, Gagner had more points in that game than Scott Gomez of the Montreal Canadiens does on the entire season. Not that it's a surprise, but Gomez is often the subject of Twitter jokes. I guess $8 million doesn't quite buy what it used to.
All jokes aside, Gagner's legendary night was only the 16th instance in NHL history of a player scoring at least eight points. The league record is 10 points in a game, held by Toronto Maple Leafs great Darryl Sittler, back on February 7, 1976.
If his performance already isn't in perspective, here's another look at it. Had Gagner added one more point, he would have been the only player to have ever scored a total of nine points in a game. All of the other players, including Gretzky, Coffey, Mario Lemieux, Peter Stastny and Maurice Richard also registered eight-point nights.
Gagner, the former sixth overall pick in 2007, has now penciled his name in the record books next to two incredible Hall of Fame talents. It sounds a little odd, but when you talk about that scoring flair, Gagner was an offensive dynamo during his time with the London Knights in the OHL. Gagner registered 118 points in 53 games back in 2006-07, so the potential was certainly there. With that being said, I think it's safe to say that nobody saw a game like that coming at all this season. It will sure make for a great trivia question down the road.
Gagner was fittingly awarded all three stars of the game at Rexall Place in Edmonton. One thing is for sure, this will be a game both Gagner himself and fans in Edmonton will never forget.