What Is the Highest-Scoring Game by a Single Player in NHL History?

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The record for the highest-scoring game by a single player in National Hockey League history dates back to the early years of the league, which was founded in 1917.

Joe Malone, one of the great forwards of the early 20th century, scored seven goals for the Quebec Bulldogs on January 31, 1920. The Bulldogs defeated the Toronto St. Patricks 10-6. Malone's record has yet to be equaled.

Malone also recorded a six-goal game that same season and had three five-goal games for the Montreal Canadiens in 1917-18.

Known as "Phantom Joe," Malone won two Stanley Cups with the Bulldogs in the pre-NHL era, and another with Montreal before retiring in 1924.

In the NHL's modern era, two players have come close to Malone's record by scoring six goals in a game. Red Berenson of the St. Louis Blues did it in 1968, and Darryl Sittler of the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1976.

Others who scored six goals in a game were:

  • Newsy Lalonde of the Montreal Canadiens in 1920
  • Corb Denneny of the Toronto St. Pats in 1920
  • Cy Denneny of the Ottawa Senators in 1921
  • Syd Howe of the Detroit Red Wings in 1944

Lalonde, known as the "Flying Frenchman," actually set the NHL individual record for most goals in a game when he scored six on January 10, 1920, but his record was short-lived. Malone broke the record 21 days later, on January 31, when he had his seven-goal game.

Other Scoring Records

Lalonde's feat helped set another NHL scoring record, one that has never been broken and has been equaled just once. That record was the most total goals scored in a single NHL game.  On that January day in 1920, Lalonde's Montreal Canadiens and Toronto St. Pats combined to score 21 goals in a game that Montreal won 14-7. It took nearly 66 years for that record to be tied when the Edmonton Oilers and Chicago Blackhawks took the ice on December 11, 1985. The Oilers won 12-9.

In that 1985 game, the Oilers' Wayne Gretzky tied a league record with seven assists, the most in a single game. Surprisingly, the NHL's all-time leading scorer didn't score a goal in that game. Gretzky holds NHL records for most goals in a career (894), most goals in a season (92), most career assists (1,963), most consecutive 40-goal seasons (12), most career games with three or more goals (50), and the list goes on and on. It's no wonder that Gretzky is called "The Great One" and is referred to as the greatest ice hockey player of all time.