Gordie Howe scores in NHL debut

Updated: October 17, 2005, 4:32 PM ET
By Larry Schwartz | Special to ESPN.com

Oct. 16, 1946

Fresh from the farmlands of Saskatchewan, 18-year-old Gordie Howe shows his potential for the Detroit Red Wings in his NHL debut. The big right wing scores a goal against Toronto Maple Leafs goalie Turk Broda, a future Hall of Famer, in the second period of a 3-3 season-opening tie.

This will be one of only seven goals Howe scores in his first season. But he will get better, much better, and will finish with 801 goals in 26 NHL seasons before retiring at the age of 52 in 1980. Counting the 174 goals Howe will score in six WHA seasons, he will conclude his legendary career with 975 regular-season goals, plus another 96 in the playoffs.