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HARVEST of the SEASONS
DAVID SABINO
November 23, 2012
A year-by-year analysis of a long and prosperous sports career, the likes of which we may never see again
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November 23, 2012

Harvest Of The Seasons

A year-by-year analysis of a long and prosperous sports career, the likes of which we may never see again

REGULAR SEASON

PLAYOFFS

SEASON

TEAM

LEAGUE

GAMES

GOALS

ASSISTS

POINTS

PIM

GAMES

GOALS

ASSISTS

POINTS

PIM

1946--47

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

58

7

15

22

52

5

0

0

0

18

Signed at age 18 for $7,000, Gordie Howe debuts for the Red Wings and portends the future with a goal in his first game, against the Maple Leafs.

1947--48

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

60

16

28

44

63

10

1

1

2

11

New Wings coach Tommy Ivan forms the high-scoring Production Line, uniting Howe with left wing Ted Lindsay and center Sid Abel.

1948--49

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

40

12

25

37

57

11

8

3

11

19

Howe misses 20 games with injuries yet is named an NHL All-Star (second team) for the first time, while tying for seventh in the league in assists.

1949--50

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

35

33

68

69

1

0

0

0

7

Howe's career nearly ends (his postseason does) when he slams headfirst into the boards after missing a check in Detroit's first playoff game en route to the Cup.

1950--51

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

43

43

86

74

6

4

3

7

4

With 86 points, Howe breaks the NHL single-season record of 82, set by Boston's Herb Cain in 1943--44.

1951--52

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

47

39

86

78

8

2

5

7

2

After matching his single-season scoring mark, Howe is the co-leader in points in the playoffs and earns his first Hart Memorial Trophy, as league MVP.

1952--53

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

49

46

95

57

6

2

5

7

2

Howe becomes the first three-time Art Ross Trophy winner as the league's top scorer, and resets the single-season points record.

1953--54

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

33

48

81

109

12

4

5

9

31

Despite relinquishing the goals title to Maurice Richard of the Canadiens, Howe wins an unprecedented fourth straight point-scoring crown.

1954--55

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

64

29

33

62

68

11

9

11

20

24

For a fourth time Howe gets his name etched on the Stanley Cup, after setting a postseason record with 20 points, including a playoff-high nine goals.

1955--56

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

38

41

79

100

10

3

9

12

8

Howe joins Richard and Nels Stewart as the only players to reach 300 goals when he scores in Detroit's 3--2 win over the Blackhawks on Feb. 7, 1956.

1956--57

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

44

45

89

72

5

2

5

7

6

On Christmas Day, Howe scores three goals and adds three assists in a 8--1 rout of the Rangers, the highest single-game point output of his NHL career.

1957--58

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

64

33

44

77

40

4

1

1

2

0

Howe's 409th assist, which he dishes out on Nov. 28 against the Maple Leafs, makes him the NHL's career leader, passing Montreal's Elmer Lach.

1958--59

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

32

46

78

57

-

-

-

-

-

Howe becomes the second NHL player with 400 goals. Fittingly the milestone occurs in the Montreal Forum, home to the other, Richard (who finished with 544).

1959--60

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

28

45

73

46

6

1

5

6

4

Playing in his 888th career game, Howe gets his 947th point, passing Richard as the NHL's alltime leading scorer.

1960--61

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

64

23

49

72

30

11

4

11

15

10

An eventful season: Howe sets the alltime record for playoff assists after becoming the first NHL player to exceed 1,000 career regular-season points.

1961--62

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

33

44

77

54

-

-

-

-

-

The Red Wings miss the playoffs for just the second time in Howe's career, but he plays in his 1,000th career game, the most in NHL history.

1962--63

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

38

48

86

100

11

7

9

16

22

Mr. Hockey adds two more trophies to an already overstocked case by taking home the Hart and the Ross. It's the sixth time he's earned each.

1963--64

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

69

26

47

73

70

14

9

10

19

16

On Nov. 10, Howe scores his 545th career goal, against Montreal, to pass Richard as the NHL's alltime leading goal scorer.

1964--65

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

29

47

76

104

7

4

2

6

20

By finishing third in scoring, Howe extends his NHL record of placing in the top five in points to 16 consecutive seasons.

1965--66

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

70

29

46

75

83

12

4

6

10

12

Howe becomes the first player to reach 600 regular-season goals with a Nov. 27 score in Montreal.

1966--67

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

69

25

40

65

53

-

-

-

-

-

As he begins his 21st season, Howe establishes himself as the player with the longest consecutive NHL tenure, passing Dit Clapper and Bill Gadsby.

1967--68

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

74

39

43

82

53

-

-

-

-

-

The first season of expansion is a down one for Howe and the Wings, who finish with a worse record than rest of the Original Six and five of six new teams.

1968--69

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

76

44

59

103

58

-

-

-

-

-

United with Alex Delvecchio and Frank Mahovlich, Howe has a career-high 59 assists as part of the first 100-point season in his career—at age 40.

1969--70

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

76

31

40

71

58

4

2

0

2

2

Howe's streak of consecutive seasons in the league's top five in scoring ends as he's limited by bone fragments and a dead navicular bone in his wrist.

1970--71

DETROIT RED WINGS

NHL

63

23

29

52

38

-

-

-

-

-

Howe gets his 1,000th career assist on Oct. 29 against Boston at the Olympia. At season's end he bows to severe arthritis and retires.

1971--72

DID NOT PLAY

Less than a year after his retirement, Howe's sweater is raised to the rafters at Detroit's Olympia Stadium, the number 9 never to be worn again by a Red Wing.

1972--73

DID NOT PLAY

A member of the Red Wings' front office, Howe is offered, and turns down, the opportunity to become the first coach of the expansion Islanders.

1973--74

HOUSTON AEROS

WHA

70

31

69

100

46

13

3

14

17

34

Howe emerges from retirement to play with sons Mark and Marty on the WHA's Houston Aeros, leads the team to the title and is named MVP.

1974--75

HOUSTON AEROS

WHA

75

34

65

99

84

13

8

12

20

20

With Howe finishing sixth in the league in assists and eighth in points, the Aeros win their second championship in the WHA's second season.

1975--76

HOUSTON AEROS

WHA

78

32

70

102

76

17

4

8

12

31

Elevated to president of the Aeros, Howe continues playing and sets a career high in assists, falling one point shy of his best-scoring season.

1976--77

HOUSTON AEROS

WHA

62

24

44

68

57

11

5

3

8

11

Howe, now 48, retires—sort of. He steps down as president of the Aeros to concentrate on scoring goals.

1977--78

NEW ENGLAND WHALERS

WHA

76

34

62

96

85

14

5

5

10

15

On Dec. 7, Howe's first-period tally against the Birmingham Bulls makes him the first pro hockey player to reach 1,000 goals (regular season and playoffs).

1978--79

NEW ENGLAND WHALERS

WHA

58

19

24

43

51

10

3

1

4

4

In a series between the WHA All-Stars and Dynamo Moscow, Gordie plays right wing, son Mark left and 17-year-old Wayne Gretzky center on the same line.

1979--80

HARTFORD WHALERS

NHL

80

15

26

41

42

3

1

1

2

2

Returning to the NHL as its oldest player ever (51), in the WHA merger, Howe receives a hero's welcome in Detroit for the All-Star Game, his record 23rd.

[This article contains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]

[This article contains a table. Please see hardcopy of magazine or PDF.]

TROPHY CASE

An inventory of the most notable honors bestowed on Mr. Hockey over the course of his historic run

4 STANLEY CUPS won as a Red Wing during a six-year span in the early 1950s ('50, '52, '54, '55).

6 HART TROPHIES won as the NHL's most valuable player.

6 ART ROSS TROPHIES won as the NHL's leading scorer.

21 TIMES named an end-of-season NHL All-Star by the Professional Hockey Writers Association, 12 times making the first team.

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