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Happy birthday to Mr. Hockey

Legendary Red Wings forward Gordie Howe turns 86 on Monday

Monday, 03.31.2014 / 12:26 PM ET / News
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Happy birthday to Mr. Hockey
Longtime friends Gordie Howe and Bill Gadsby share a moment at the unveiling of Mr. Hockey's stature inside Joe Louis Arena. (Photo by Dave Reginek/Detroit Red Wings)

Gordie Howe, the legendary Mr. Hockey, celebrates his 86th birthday Monday.

Born March 31, 1928 in Floral, Saskatchewan, Howe has been part of the hockey universe since his debut with the Red Wings on Oct. 16, 1946.

The numbers that surround Howe's career have reached iconic status. His 801 goals and 1,850 points when he retired in 1980 were NHL standards; he still ranks second to Wayne Gretzky and in goals, and third, behind Gretzky and Mark Messier, in points.

Howe played 26 seasons in the NHL, all but one with the Red Wings. He's the only player in NHL history to play in five decades, and his 1,767 games remains the most in League history. His 1,685 penalty minutes are a testament to the toughness he played with.

He won the Hart Trophy six times, the Art Ross Trophy six times, the Stanley Cup four times and skated in 23 NHL All-Star Games. He was inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 1972, won the Lester Patrick Award for contributions to hockey in the United States in 1967 and was honored with the NHL Lifetime Achievement Award in 1998.

Howe initially retired in 1971, but was away from the game for two seasons, returning in 1973 to play in the World Hockey Association. He spent six seasons in the WHA, with the Houston Aeros and New England Whalers, and his teammates were sons Mark Howe and Marty Howe.

The Whalers were absorbed into the NHL prior to the 1979-80 season; that was Gordie's final season, and at age 51 he had 15 goals and 41 points in 80 games.

Gordie's longtime teammate, friend and fellow Hall of Fame member Bill Gadsby, best summarized Howe's career: "He was not only the greatest hockey player I've ever seen, but also the greatest athlete."

SCHEDULE

HOME
AWAY
PROMOTIONAL

STANDINGS

EASTERN CONFERENCE
  TEAM GP W L OT GF GA PTS
1 WSH 51 38 9 4 166 114 80
2 FLA 53 31 16 6 143 118 68
3 NYR 53 30 18 5 150 135 65
4 TBL 52 29 19 4 138 123 62
5 BOS 52 28 18 6 151 137 62
6 DET 53 27 18 8 133 131 62
7 PIT 52 27 18 7 138 132 61
8 NYI 51 27 18 6 143 127 60
9 NJD 54 26 21 7 120 122 59
10 CAR 54 24 21 9 130 142 57
11 MTL 54 26 24 4 143 143 56
12 OTT 54 25 23 6 153 166 56
13 PHI 51 23 19 9 121 133 55
14 BUF 53 21 26 6 120 139 48
15 TOR 51 19 23 9 117 140 47
16 CBJ 54 21 28 5 135 168 47

STATS

2015-2016 REGULAR SEASON
SKATERS: GP G A +/- Pts
D. Larkin 52 18 20 26 38
H. Zetterberg 53 9 27 3 36
T. Tatar 52 16 17 -1 33
G. Nyquist 53 14 15 -2 29
P. Datsyuk 38 8 20 12 28
J. Abdelkader 53 14 13 -3 27
M. Green 46 4 17 -7 21
N. Kronwall 45 3 14 -10 17
B. Richards 39 5 11 7 16
D. DeKeyser 49 6 8 12 14
 
GOALIES: W L OT Sv% GAA
P. Mrazek 20 10 4 .933 1.97
J. Howard 7 8 4 .904 2.89