Columbus Blue Jackets winger Nick Foligno and Minnesota Wild center Mikael Granlund got their names in the record book Tuesday night, and it’s hard to imagine a scenario in which the two players won’t be linked forever after tying the record for fastest goals by two teams when the pair scored two seconds apart.
The Blue Jackets trailed the Wild 2-1 late in the third period when Columbus coach John Tortorella decided to pull goaltender Anton Forsberg. With the net empty, Minnesota winger Zach Parise was able to notch his third goal of the outing to put the Wild up 3-1 with less than one minute remaining.
Down two goals, Tortorella decided to try his hand with the net empty once more. After a Columbus faceoff win, Forsberg again headed to the bench and this time the Blue Jackets capitalized when Foligno knocked home a loose puck with 16 seconds remaining in the game. Tortorella kept Forsberg off the ice for the post-goal faceoff, though, which set up the record-tying tally:
The goals by Foligno and Granlund tied a record that was set 28 seasons ago when Boston’s Ken Linseman and St. Louis’ Doug Gilmour scored two seconds apart in a Dec. 19, 1987 contest. That mark went unmatched for close to three decades before Tuesday’s game, and it will likely be a long while before another pairing joins Foligno, Granlund, Linseman and Gilmour in that club.
That said, according to the NHL Guide and Record Book, Chicago’s Steve Thomas and the Minnesota North Stars’ Dave Gagner nearly reached the mark in 1988 when Gagner scored three seconds after Thomas. The NHL notes, however, that the game clock was slow to start after the faceoff, meaning Thomas and Gagner may well have tied the record.
Before Foligno and Granlund matched the mark, the closest two players have come to tying Linseman and Gilmour’s record was Dec. 9, 2014, in a game between the Washington Capitals and Tampa Bay Lightning. Lightning center Valtteri Filppula scored at 19:56 of the third period and Capitals winger Alex Ovechkin scored at 19:59.