The Legacy of Wayne Gretzky

by Zach McGowan

Why Wayne Gretzky is by far the greatest NHL’er of all time

Wayne Gretzky may not be the fastest, biggest, most athletic or skilled player in the history of the National Hockey League; however, it is rarely disputed that he was the best player ever to lace up the skates.

According to Gretzky’s Wikipedia page, he is an owner to 40 regular season records and an additional 15 post-season records in his remarkable 20-year career. The fact of the matter is: the “Great One’s” legacy is undeniable. Some of the records he owns include: most goals, assists and points of all time. He also holds the record for the highest amount of those previously mentioned statistics recorded in a single season.

One of the most clutch players to play the game, Gretzky is tied with fellow legend Bobby Hull for most playoff game-winning goals with 24. Even without all “unofficial” records considered, Gretzky’s career total of official NHL records clocks in at an immense 61. Most importantly, Gretzky was a winner of hockey’s most prized trophy, the Stanley Cup, four times.

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Other absurd facts about Gretzky’s phenomenal hockey career, per Bleacher Report, include:

– Became a professional (WHA) at just age 17

-Won the Hart Trophy (NHL MVP) award 8 times in a row

-If he never scored a goal for the entirety of his career, he would still be the all time leading point scorer in NHL history solely with his 1,963 career assist total

-Scored an NHL record 50 goals in just 39 games to start the season

-Gretzky had 4 consecutive seasons with 200+ points, while no other player has ever notched 200 points in a season.

-Scored 92 goals in one season. No player has eclipsed the 65 goal mark over the last 20 years.

-He was named captain on four different NHL teams, which no other player has ever done.

The legacy of the player well-known around the hockey world as “The Great One” is absolutely undeniable. Many of his records are considered to be “unbreakable,” and it is still hard even for hockey experts to wrap their head around how it would be possible for any other player to reach them. To me, based on Gretzky’s ridiculous career stats and totals, it’s near impossible to make a convincing case on how The Great One wasn’t the most dominating player in the history of the league.

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