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Who holds the record for the most points scored in one NHL game?


Darryl Sittler in 2008

Darryl Sittler waits in the locker room for the start of the Legends Classic Game on November 9, 2008, at the Air Canada Centre in Toronto

Bruce Bennett/Getty Images
Question: Who holds the record for the most points scored in one NHL game?
Though a dozen NHL players have scored eight points in one game, only one guy managed to top that number. He did it on a memorable night in 1976.

On February 7, 1976, Darryl Sittler of the Toronto Maple Leafs put on one of the most astonishing single-game performances in NHL history.

By scoring six goals and four assists against the Boston Bruins, Sittler set an NHL record that might be unbreakable.

He did it one on of hockey's biggest stages, a coast-to-coast broadcast of Hockey Night in Canada.

Toronto came into the game in the midst of a midseason slump. But if you had to pick anyone to break out in a big way, Sittler would have been your man.

The Maple Leafs' captain was in the sixth year of a Hall of Fame career, and would finish the season with 100 points (41 goals and 59 assists).

Sittler opened the game with a good, but hardly spectacular first period, setting up a pair of goals as Toronto took an early lead.

But in the second period, everything started breaking his way. He racked up a hat trick and another pair of assists, giving him a seven-point total after 40 minutes.

At the time, the single-game points record was shared by a pair of Montreal Canadiens.

Maurice "Rocket" Richard had scored an eight-point game in 1944. Bert Olmstead matched the total in 1954

Sittler later said that he didn't know where his total stood until the second intermission of the historic game. That's when someone told him he was one point short of the record.

Another hat trick in the third period vaulted Sittler head and shoulders above the competition. The Leafs also managed a goal without their captain involved, and closed out an 11-4 victory.

For Boston goalie Dave Reece, the record-setting night held a different kind of significance. It was his final appearance in an NHL net. (Reece played 14 games for the Bruins in what would be his only NHL season.)

In the years since, the Richard/Olmstead mark has been matched many times.

Mario Lemieux had three eight-point games during the 1987-88 NHL season. Wayne Gretzky did it twice during his career. Brothers Peter and Anton Stastny did it in the same game in 1981.

But no one has come close to matching the night in 1976, when it seemed that Darryl Sittler's every touch of the puck ended up on the scoreboard.

Eight-Point Games in the NHL:
Maurice Richard, Montreal Canadiens, December 28, 1944
Bert Olmstead, Montreal Canadiens, January 1, 1954
Tom Bladon, Philadelphia Flyers, December 11, 1977
Bryan Trottier, New York Islanders, December 23, 1978
Peter Šťastný, Quebec Nordiques, February 22, 1981
Anton Šťastný, Quebec Nordiques, February 22, 1981
Wayne Gretzky, Edmonton Oilers, November 19, 1983
Wayne Gretzky,Edmonton Oilers, January 4, 1984
Paul Coffey, Edmonton Oilers, March 14, 1986
Patrik Sundstrom, New Jersey Devils, April 22, 1988 (playoff game)
Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins, October 15, 1988
Bernie Nicholls, Los Angeles Kings, December 1, 1988
Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins, December 31, 1988
Mario Lemieux, Pittsburgh Penguins, April 25, 1989 (playoff game)
Sam Gagner, Edmonton Oilers, February 2, 2012

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