This Day In Sports History (March 14th) — Gordie Howe
It was on this day in 1997 that a 68-year-old Gordie Howe signed a contract with the AHL’s Syracuse Crunch. He was attempting to become the first player to play professional hockey in six consecutive decades.
Unfortunately, Howe’s comeback had to be canceled because the Crunch were in the playoff hunt and could not afford to sacrifice a roster spot for a player that they felt could put them at a disadvantage. Later on that year, he would get his chance to accomplish the milestone, stepping onto the ice for one shift as a member of the IHL’s Detroit Vipers.
Strangely enough, the significance of this day for Howe goes beyond just his contract with the Syracuse Crunch. He also became just the second NHLer to score 500 goals on March 14, 1962. It was just another one of the many milestones Howe reached during his incredibly long professional hockey career.
Here is a look at the ceremony prior to Howe’s game with the Vipers.
Nicolas Anelka, EPL – Born March 14, 1979 (age 35) in Versailles, France
Kirby Puckett, MLB – Born March 14, 1962 (age 52) in Chicago, Illinois
Wes Unseld, NBA – Born March 14, 1946 (age 68) in Louisville, Kentucky