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This Week in Blackhawks History: Stan Mikita born, longest game ever & more

Greg Boysen Avatar
May 19, 2023

When you’ve had a long and storied history like the Chicago Blackhawks, every date on the calendar will be full of memories. The latest installment of This Week in Blackhawks History celebrates the birth of a team legend and remembers a pair of conference championships.

May 19

1961 – Wayne Van Dorp was born in Vancouver, BC. The left winger scored seven goals and 11 points in 69 games for the Blackhawks between 1988-90.

1968 – Center Mark Janssens was born in Surrey, BC. He played the final 124 games of his 14-season NHL career with the Blackhawks, scoring one goal and seven points between 1998-2000.

1979 – Denis Arkhipov was born in Kazan, USSR. The center spent the 2006-07 season in Chicago, wearing No. 19. He scored 10 goals and 27 points in 79 games.

1981 – Goaltender Michael Leighton was born in Petrolia, ON. He appeared in 43 games over his two stints with the Blackhawks. He was in net for the Philadelphia Flyers when Patrick Kane scored his famous Stanley Cup-clinching overtime goal in 2010.

1987 – Winger Jack Skille was born in Madison, WI. The Blackhawks selected him seventh overall at the 2005 NHL Entry Draft. He only played 79 games in Chicago, scoring 12 goals and 25 points before being traded to the Florida Panthers for Michael Frolik.

1995 – The Blackhawks beat the Toronto Maple Leafs 5-2 in Game 7 of the Western Conference Quarterfinals. Joe Murphy scored a pair of goals, including the game-winner in the third period. Hall of Famer Denis Savard had a goal and two assists in the series-clinching victory.

2009 – Mikeal Samuelsson’s overtime goal gave the Detroit Red Wings a 2-0 series lead over the Blackhawks in the Western Conference Finals. Jonathan Toews had both Chicago goals in the 3-2 loss.

2015 – The Blackhawks played the longest game in franchise history. Marcus Kruger scored at the 16:12 mark of the third overtime to give them a 3-2 win over the Anaheim Ducks in Game 2 of the Western Conference Finals. Andrew Shaw and Marian Hossa each scored power-play goals in the first period.

May 20

1940 – Stan Mikita is born in Sokolce, Czechoslovakia. The two-time Hart Trophy winner spent his entire 22-season NHL career with the Blackhawks. He earned his statue on Madison St. by becoming the franchise’s all-time leader in games played (1,396), assists (926), and points (1,467). His 541 career goals are second only to Bobby Hull’s 604. The hockey world lost Mikita on Aug. 7, 2018, after a three-year battle with Lewy body dementia.

1965 – Boston Bruins head coach Bruce Cassidy was born in Ottawa, ON. He played all of his 36 NHL games with the Blackhawks between 1984-90. The defenseman scored four goals and 17 points.

1992 – Jeremy Roenick scored early in overtime to beat the Edmonton Oilers 4-3 in Game 3 of the Campbell Conference Final. The Blackhawks erased an early 2-0 deficit to win their 10th straight game of the postseason, tying the NHL playoff record for the most consecutive wins in a single postseason set by the 1970 Bruins. Chris Chelios had a goal and an assist, while Michel Goulet chipped in with a pair of helpers.

May 21

1924 – Center Pat Lundy was born in Saskatoon, SK. He had nine goals and 18 points during the 1950-51 season, his final in the NHL and only one with the Blackhawks.

1956 – The Blackhawks purchased the contracts of Eric Nesterenko and veteran goaltender Harry Lumley from the Toronto Maple Leafs for $40,000. Nesterenko played 1,013 games with Chicago, scoring 207 goals and 495 points. He was part of the 1961 Stanley Cup championship team.

1969 – Reid Simpson was born in Flin Flon, MB. The Blackhawks acquired the forward from the New Jersey Devils in 1998. He had eight goals and 14 points in 91 games before being traded to the Tampa Bay Lightning with defenseman Brian Muir for Michael Nylander.

1975 – Todd White was born in Kanata, ON. He started his 13-season NHL career with the Blackhawks during the 1997-97 season. He had six goals and 14 points in 43 games before he was traded to the Flyers for unknown compensation in 2000.

1981 – Goaltender Craig Anderson was born in Park Ridge, IL. The Blackhawks drafted him in the third round (73rd overall) of the 1999 NHL Entry Draft. He appeared in 56 games for Chicago before being traded to the Panthers for a sixth-round pick in 2006. Anderson made 31 starts for the Buffalo Sabres this past season.

1995 – Joe Murphy scored a power-play goal at 9:04 of overtime to lead the Blackhawks to a 2-1 win over the Vancouver Canucks, in Game 1 of the Western Conference Semifinals. Savard scored the other Blackhawks’ goal before picking up an assist on Murphy’s game-winner. Ed Belfour made 26 saves in net.

2010 – Dustin Byfuglien’s overtime goal gave the Blackhawks a 3-2 win over the San Jose Sharks and a 3-0 stranglehold on the Western Conference Finals. Dave Bolland had the primary assist on the game-winning goal after scoring himself in the third period.

2013 – The Red Wings beat the Blackhawks 3-1 to take a 2-1 series lead in the Western Conference Semifinals. Drew Miller scored the game-winning goal for Detroit, while Patrick Kane had the lone Chicago goal.

2014 – The Los Angeles Kings staged a huge comeback to even the Western Conference Finals at 1-1. They scored five goals in the third period of Game 2 for a 6-2 victory. The Kings became just the second team in league history to win a playoff game by at least four goals after trailing through two periods. Jeff Carter scored a hat trick during the final frame.

2015 – Simon Despres’ second-period goal turned out to be the game-winner as the Ducks beat the Blackhawks 2-1 in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals to take a 2-1 series lead. Kane had the lone goal for the home team.

May 22

1918 – Lude Check was born in Brandon, MB. The left winger played 26 games for the Blackhawks during the 1944-45 season, scoring six goals and eight points. Lude Check also sounds like something you’d get a five-minute minor for!

1952 – Rich Preston was born in Regina, SK. The forward scored 96 goals and 223 points during his six seasons with the Blackhawks between 1979-84. He was traded to the Devils in 1984 for winger Bob MacMillan.

1962 – Perry Pelensky was born in Edmonton, AB. His only four NHL games came with the Blackhawks during the 1983-84 season, and he was held off the scoresheet.

1964 – Defenseman Jim Playfair was born in Fort St. James. BC. He played 19 games for the Blackhawks between 1987-89.

1970 – The NHL announced that it was expanding from 12 to 14 teams for the 1970-71 season. The Sabres and Vancouver Canucks were officially granted franchises. These teams joined the old East Division, made up of the “Original Six” teams. To even up the two divisions, the Blackhawks moved over to the West Division with the six teams that joined the league in 1967.

1992 – The Blackhawks advanced to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time since 1973. Brian Noonan scored a pair of goals in the 5-1 victory over the Edmonton Oilers in Game 4 of the Campbell Conference Final. This was their 11th straight victory of the 1992 postseason, setting a new NHL record for the most consecutive wins in a single playoff year. Unfortunately, this was their last win of the season, as the Pittsburgh Penguins swept them in the Final.

2009 – It was the Blackhawks’ turn to win in overtime as Patrick Sharp gave them a 4-3 victory over the Red Wings in Game 3 of the Western Conference Finals. He also scored the opening tally of the game in the first period. Andrew Ladd and Samuel Pahlsson had goals as well. Detroit’s Hall of Fame defenseman Nicklas Lidstrom broke Larry Robinson’s record by playing in his 228th career Stanley Cup playoff game. Lidstrom retired with 263 postseason games played, the second-most in NHL history behind his former teammate Chelios, who played in 266 playoff games.

2014 – The Kings took a 3-1 series lead in the Western Conference Finals with a 4-3 win on home ice. Carter led the way with a goal and two assists. Toews scored twice for the Blackhawks, with Sharp adding the third goal in the final seconds of regulation.

May 23

1929 – Forward Vic Stasiuk was born in Lethbridge, AB. He played the first 38 games of this 13-season NHL career with the Blackhawks, scoring six goals and 10 points. In 1950, he was traded to the Red Wings with Bert Olmstead for Steve Black and Lee Fogolin, where he won two Stanley Cups in 1952 and 1955.

1968 – The Blackhawks traded defenseman Pierre Pilote to the Toronto Maple Leafs for Jim Pappin. Pilote was in the twilight of his Hall of Fame career and played just one season with the Maple Leafs. Meanwhile, Pappin was a very productive player in seven seasons in Chicago. He scored at least 30 goals four times, including a career-high 41 during the 1972-73 season. Overall, Pappin scored 216 goals and 444 points in 488 games before being traded to the California Golden Seals in 1975.

1979 – Brian Campbell was born in Strathroy, ON. He played 295 games over two stints with the Blackhawks after signing a huge free-agent contract in 2008. He had 24 goals and 134 points in Chicago and was a member of the 2010 Stanley Cup championship team. He is currently serving a role assisting general manager Kyle Davidson, but his official title has yet to be named.

1995- The Blackhawks defeated the Canucks 2-0 in Game 2 of the Western Conference Semifinals. Jim Cummins scored the only goal needed in the first period before Patrick Poulin tacked on an insurance goal in the final frame. Belfour stopped all 17 Vancouver shots he faced.

2010 – The Blackhawks erased a 2-0 deficit to beat the San Jose Sharks 4-2 to complete a four-game sweep of the Western Conference Final. Byfuglien scored his third game-winning goal of the series as the Blackhawks advanced to the Stanley Cup Final for the first time in 18 years. Kris Versteeg added a goal and an assist.

2013 – Jakub Kindl and Dan Cleary scored while goaltender Jimmy Howard made 28 saves in the Red Wings’ 2-0 win over the Blackhawks. This gave Detroit a 3-1 series lead in the Western Conference Semifinals, putting a second Stanley Cup championship in four seasons in serious jeopardy.

2015 – The Blackhawks beat the Ducks 5-4 in double overtime in Game 4 of the Western Conference Final. Antoine Vermette, a healthy scratch in a Game 3 loss, scored early in the second overtime to even the series at 2-2. The Blackhawks became the first team in NHL history to win four multiple-overtime games in the same playoff. The two teams scored six combined goals in the third period, three for each side.

May 24

1901 – Hockey Hall of Famer Lionel Conacher was born in Toronto, ON. He spent the 1933-34 season with the Blackhawks and scored nine goals and 23 points in 48 games.

1911 – Norm Locking was born in Owen Sound, ON. The forward had two goals and eight points in 48 career NHL games, all with the Blackhawks.

1953 – Dan Hinton was born in Toronto, ON. The Blackhawks’ fifth-round draft pick in 1973 was pointless in 14 career games.

1978 – Defenseman Jonathan Aitken was born in Edmonton, AB. He was the eighth overall pick of the 1996 NHL Entry Draft by the Bruins. The Blackhawks signed him as a free agent in 2002, and he had one assist in 41 games the following season.

1988 – Artem Anisimov was born in Yaroslavl, USSR. He was acquired by the Blackhawks in 2015 from the Columbus Blue Jackets the first time they traded away Brandon Saad. He had 77 goals and 155 points in 291 games before being traded to the Ottawa Senators for Zack Smith in 2019.

1991 – Viktor Svedberg was born in Gothenburg, Sweden. The 6-foot-8 defenseman had two goals and four points in 27 career games with the Blackhawks.

1996 – Forward Pius Suter was born in Zurich, Switzerland. He had 14 goals and 27 points in 55 games during the 2020-21 season before signing with the Red Wings last summer.

2009- Toews had the lone goal in a 6-1 loss to the Red Wings in Game 4 of the Western Conference Finals. Future Blackhawk Marian Hossa had two goals and an assist for Detroit.

May 25

1894 – Mickey McKay was born in Chelsey, ON. The Hall of Fame Center played his first two NHL seasons with the Blackhawks in 1926-27 and 1927-28. He scored 31 goals and 43 points in 70 games.

1895 – Winger Jim Riley was born in Bayfield, NB. He was pointless in three games for the Blackhawks as McKay’s teammate during the 1926-27 season.

1995 – Chelios scored in overtime to give the Blackhawks a 3-2 win and 3-0 series lead over the Canucks in Western Conference Semifinals. Poulin and Murray Craven had the goals in regulation, while Russ Courtnall had both Vancouver tallies.

2013 – The Blackhawks began their epic comeback in the Western Conference Semifinals with a 4-1 win over the Red Wings. Andrew Shaw scored a pair of goals, including the game-winner during a second-period power play. The victory kept the series alive and made the teams return to Detroit for Game 6.

2015- The Blackhawks’ epic comeback attempt fell short in a 5-4 overtime loss to the Ducks in Game 5 of the Western Conference Final. Anaheim built a 3-0 lead and was up 4-2 with less than two minutes to play. Toews scored a pair of goals with the goaltender pulled for an extra attacker to force overtime. Matt Beleskey gave the Ducks a 3-2 series lead just 45 seconds into the extra time.

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