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NHL History: Gary Suter sets rookie assist record with six in a game

On April 4th, 1986, Calgary Flames defenceman, Gary Suter, set an NHL record for the most assists in a single game by a rookie.

It was on this day in Calgary Flames history that Gary Sutter landed in the NHL record books after he put up a remarkable six assists in a 9-3 blowout victory over the Edmonton Oilers, a record that still stands for more than three decades. In the game, Suter had already found the scoresheet four times by the 30-minute mark and it was almost an unfortunate bit of luck that he wasn’t able to tack on more than the six he ended up with. Needless to say, it was a performance that hadn’t been seen before or since.

The closest any rookie has come to surpassing Suter’s record in modern history came in 2018 when New York Islanders forward, Mathew Barzal, picked up five assists in a single game against the lowly Detroit Red Wings. However, outside of a few forwards such as Barzal and Ryan Nugent-Hopkins, no defenceman has come close to Suter’s record in a long, long time, leaving us to believe that this is a record that’s likely to stand for many more years.

SUTER’S ROOKIE SEASON

Season Team Lge GP G A Pts PIM +/- GP G A Pts PIM
1985-86 Calgary Flames NHL 80 18 50 68 141 11 10 2 8 10 8
NHL Totals 1145 203 642 845 1349 108 17 56 73 120