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What Is A Natural Hat Trick In The NHL?

By Swikriti Kandel / 16 May 2023 03:39 AM

Evander Kane Attained His Career's Sixth Trio Goals In A Game During 2023 Postseason
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What is a natural hat trick in the NHL Hockey? Answer: A natural hat trick in NHL means a hockey player secures three goals consecutively. A hat trick is considered to be an achievement of an athlete.

The term 'hat-trick' means that a player has scored three goals throughout a game (may or may not be consecutive).

When the term natural is added then it depicts that the goals are uninterrupted. It is perilous to score three times in a row but not impossible.

Natural hat-trick does not include scores from shootouts. Also, it is rare and does not happen in every game that you watch at the stadium or on TV.

The players need to have a perfect strategy and on-point strength to secure it. Since it takes plenty of practice, the three consecutive scoring shots are deemed impressive.

The players who have scored natural hat-trick are considered legendary in any sport. Wayne Gretzky and Bill Mosienko are still recognized for their records in the feat.

Related: Most Hat Tricks In A Row NHL

Hat Trick Hockey Meaning

Hat Trick hockey meaning is a player has secured a trio of goals in a game. The three feats by a player are considered notable achievement in sports.

Scoring three goals in a match requires skill, strength, and strategy. Even if all those are in place, a hat trick can be missed due to the player's lack of awareness and concentration.

In a game, the athlete can score goals at any time including regular period or overtime. However, the goal scored in the shootout is not counted as a hat trick.

Jordan Staal Holds The Record Of Youngest Player In NHL To Earn 3 Goals In A Game
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The players who often secure a hat trick are the forwards: wingers or centers. It is challenging for the defensemen to jump into the offensive zone and secure three goals in a match.

In the National Hockey League, Harry Hyland was the first player who secured a hat-trick. The game was between Montreal Wanderers and Toronto Arenas in 1917.

Likewise, the first youngest athlete to score three goals in an NHL game is Jordan Staal. He was 18 years and 153 days mature when he achieved his first hat-trick in 2007.

Why Is It Called A Hat Trick In Hockey?

It is called a hat trick in hockey because the fans drop their hats in celebration after a player scores three times in a game.

The term was first utilized in cricket in 1858. It was used to describe the three wickets with three consecutive deliveries made by the English cricketer H. H. Stephenson.

Fans of Stephenson collected some money and presented him with a hat. In the press, it was first used in the 1865 edition of the weekly paper named Chelmsford Chronicle.

Following that, most of sports adopted the term. It is now widely used in the games of rugby, football, basketball, water polo and so on.

Hat-Trick In NHL

Fans Dropped Their Hats For Matt Boldy After He Scored Three Times In One Games
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The tradition of a hat-trick in the NHL is deemed to have begun among hockey fans in the 1950s. They used to throw their hats from their stands onto the ice.

There is a legend that refers that the hatmakers giving free hats to the athletes who secured a hat trick. However, it seems less believable than the former one.

A hat trick is a celebratory moment for both the athletes and their fans. It sums up the player's hard work and the fan's constant back support.

However, the tradition of throwing hats has changed over the decades. Predators fans have thrown catfishes and Red Wings fans have tossed octopuses into the rink.

Followers of San Jose Sharks threw sharks at the arena whilst Oilers threw beef steaks on the ice. It all began by following the original concept of throwing hats.

Fastest Hat Trick In NHL Hockey History

Fastest Hat Trick In NHL Hockey History is recorded by Bill Mosienko. He scored three consecutive goals in 21 seconds on 23 March 1952.

The record is still standing and no one has beaten it ever since. Bill secured a natural hat-trick after the last six-minute mark of the final period in the game.

Till then, Mosienko had a single assist in the game. The match was against the New York Rangers and the Black Hawks won it by an overall of 7-6.

After his outstanding achievement, Bill was featured in Chris McDonnell's book "The Game I'll Never Forget : 100 Hockey Stars' Stories".

Bill Mosienko Scored Three Goals In 21 Seconds During A 1952 Match With Rangers
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When Mosienko was asked how he did it, he responded that he was dazed and hardly realized what had happened. As per NHL, he revealed that it was as if he caught lightning in a beer bottle. 

Prior to Bill, the record was set by Carl Licombe in a game against Chicago Black Hawks in 1938. Carl scored three goals in 1 minute and 4 seconds for the Detroit Red Wings.

Likewise, the record of the team to secure the fastest hat-tricks was recorded by Montreal Maroons. Players Hooley Smith, Babe Siebert, and Dave Trottier secured a goal each in 24 seconds in 1932.

Most Hat Tricks By A Player In NHL

Most hat tricks by a player in NHL history go to Wayne Gretzky. He scored 50 hat tricks(an all-time high) in regular season of his NHL career.

Wayne is a legendary athlete known for record-breaking accomplishments. He has the highest number of goals, assists as well as points than any other player in the National Hockey League.

Wayne Gretzky Secured 50 Trio Goals In A Game During His NHL Career
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Gretzky also has the highest number of hat-tricks in the playoffs, which is 10. Jari Kurri and Maurice Richard followed him with a total of 7 3-timers in the postseason.

Mario Lemieux hat trick record places him in the second position on the list for the regular season. He achieved a hat-trick 40 times. Still, he has a difference of 10 hat-tricks (3 goals in 10 games each) with Wayne.

Evander Kane hat trick count has reached six already. He scored his career's sixth hat-trick goal in a playoff match against Seattle Kraken in March 2023.

Most Hat Tricks By A Defenseman

Bobby Orr Obtained 10 Trio Scores Throughout His Defensemen Career
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Most hat tricks by a defenseman in NHL history are recorded by Bobby Orr. Orr achieved 9 trio goals throughout his ice hockey career.

In his 12 years long career, Bobby played for Boston Bruins and Chicago Black Hawks. He was a part of Team Canada which won the 1976 Canada Cup tournament.

Orr is followed by Harry Cameron with 6 hat tricks. Likewise, the defensemen ranked third are Paul Coffey and Denis Potvin with 5 hat-tricks each.

How Many Goals Is A Hat Trick In Hockey?

In hockey, three goals from a player make a hat trick. If they are consecutive ones then they are said to be a natural hat trick.

The fans dropped their hat formerly after three goals/ feats of a player. Thus, the tradition is continued until this date and hopefully, it follows for generations to come. 

Fans Threw Rubber Rats On The Rink To Honor Scott Mellanby At A Match
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There are three variations of the hat-trick in ice hockey and they are as follows:

  • Natural Hat-trick: A player scores all three goals without any other player interrupting him. The goal secured in a shootout is not eligible for it to be a hat trick.
  • Gordie Howe Hat Trick: Termed after Gordon Howe who managed a goal, an assist, and a fight in one game. Rick Tocchet is in the lead with 18 ones.
  • Rat Trick: Termed when Scott Mellanby killed a rat with the stick in a locker room and managed to secure 2 goals in a game. Coined by goalie John Vanbiesbrouck.

NHL Hat Trick Trivia

NHL Hat Trick Trivia was a weekly show that premiered on 11 April 2020. It was hosted by then ice hockey defenseman, P.K Subban.

Every episode of the show spanned 30 minutes. It was broadcasted amid the COVID-19 pandemic to entertain the fans and award them certain prizes.

It featured ice hockey fans who played games from their home. The ones answering the hockey trivia questions correctly were given rewards by the NHL.

NHL players and celebrities also appeared in the show. Nate Schmidt, Mike Richter, Robin Thicke, Wes McCauley, Patrcie Bergeon, and others were featured as a guest. 

If the contestant answered the first question accurately then they were given an NHL hat. If the second one is correct, then they were awarded an NHL jersey.

Moreover, they earned upcoming season NHL tickets if they got the final question correct. The show continued for 10 episodes and the makers ended its telecast.

Some FAQs

What do they do with the hats from a hat trick?

They collect the hats which are in good condition and they give it to the charity organization. The organization will deliver it to the needy people.

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