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Grand moments

March 2nd, 1918
On March 2, 1918, the Canadiens played the final game of the season at the Jubilee Arena. Even though he wasn’t dressed for the occasion, Joe Malone nevertheless emerged as the NHL’s top scorer in the league’s inaugural season. With 44 goals and four assists in only 20 games, Malone finished two points ahead of Ottawa Senators forward Cy Denneny. His goal total would stand as tops in the league for 27 years before being topped by Maurice Richard, who scored 50 times in as many games in 1944-45.

Malone potted three or more on seven occasions in the NHL’s opening season. On three outings, he notched five goals in an evening, a record he would hold until Mike Bossy registered nine hat tricks in 1980-81. His 2.2 goals per game pace in the 1917-18 season has never been matched by another NHL player. Neither has his team mark for consecutive games with at least one goal, set in the first 14 games on the 1917-18 schedule.