San Jose Sharks forward Patrick Marleau scored his 500th NHL goal in his team’s Thursday game against the Vancouver Canucks.
Midway through the first period, a long pass by defenseman Brent Burns sent Marleau and Joe Pavelski up ice on a rush. Marleau then received a cross-ice pass from Pavelski and fired a shot past Vancouver goaltender Ryan Miller at the 9:30 mark.
“It was a great pass by Burnzie and Pav made a great pass over to me,” Marleau said after the game. “Just trying to get it off as quick as possible and it found its way in.”
The 37-year-old Marleau became the 45th player in NHL history to reach the achievement and did so in his 1,463rd game. Ron Francis (1,533 games) is the only player who took longer to reach 500 goals
Marleau was selected with the second overall pick in the 1997 NHL Draft by the Sharks and has played his entire career with the organization. He is the 17th player in NHL history to score his first 500 goals with one team.
“I think when you hit a mark like this, you start thinking about everyone that’s helped you along the way,” Marleau said. “Can’t name them all, that’s for sure. But to be playing with one club, and with a lot of guys for a lot of years on this team, it means a lot to share that with them and to see how happy they are for you.”
After the achievement there were many tweets of congratulations including one from Marleau’s wife.
— Christina Marleau (@c_marleau) February 3, 2017
The Sharks won the game 4-1 to improve to 33-17-2 and 68 points. Marleau has been on quite a tear of late with seven goals in his last five games. This includes a four-goal effort on Jan. 23 against the Winnipeg Jets.
Overall, he has enjoyed a nice renaissance season with the Sharks with 19 goals in 52 games after averaging 22 goals in his previous two seasons.
“Great night. His play is at a real elite level right now and it has been for a while,” Sharks coach Pete DeBoer said. “I think the guys all felt that he wanted to get it tonight. They wanted to get it for him. It’s elite company he’s in. Only 45 players in the history of the game have scored 500 goals. It’s quite an accomplishment, and all of the guys are real happy for him.”
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