Hull becomes sixth player to reach 700 goals


DETROIT (AP) -- It was a relief for everyone, from the guy with
700 career goals to the guy with two.

Brett Hull became the sixth player in NHL history to score 700
goals as the Red Wings beat the San Jose Sharks 5-4 on Monday
night. Detroit snapped a six-game winless streak (0-4-2).

Wayne Gretzky (894), Gordie Howe (801), Marcel Dionne (731),
Phil Esposito (717) and Mike Gartner (708) are the others in the
700-goal club. Only Gretzky got there quicker than Hull.

Patrick Boileau beat Evgeny Nabokov high to the stick side from
the right circle for his second career goal with 2:37 remaining to
win it.

"I'm only 698 behind," joked Boileau, a journeyman who has
spent most of the season with Grand Rapids of the American Hockey

Hull's big goal was a one-time wrist shot from the bottom of the
left circle that slipped through Nabokov's pads. Pavel Datsyuk set
up Hull for the goal with a cross-ice pass.

"It's big that we won," said Hull. "The last thing I wanted
to do was get this goal down 4-0. I wanted it to be in a win."

Hull, the son of Hall of Famer Bobby Hull, went seven games
without scoring after reaching 699. He had a huge smile on his face
as his Red Wings teammates jumped off the bench to celebrate with

"It kind of mirrored what the team has been going through:
close but no cigars," Shanahan said. "A piano came off his back
and the back of the rest of the team."

When asked if his accomplishment has sunk in yet, Hull said: "I
think so. It's been seven games. so I think it has."

Kris Draper, Brendan Shanahan and Henrik Zetterberg got the
other Detroit goals.

Mark Smith, Brad Stuart, Owen Nolan and Scott Thornton scored
for San Jose.

Zetterberg put Detroit up 4-3 just 1:54 into the third period
when he took a pass from Hull, cut in off right wing on his
backhand, switched to his forehand and slid the puck between
Nabokov's pads.

But Thornton tied it 4-4 with a power-play goal on a one-timer
from the high slot.

The teams were tied at 3 going into the third period.

Stuart's power-play goal 1:13 into the second period gave San
Jose a 2-1 lead. His slap shot from the point deflected off the
stick of Detroit's Mathieu Dandenault and past goalie Manny Legace.

But Detroit capitalized on two penalties assessed at the same

Vincent Damphousse was called for holding Shanahan, and before
the Sharks could get control of the puck for play to stop, Dan
McGillis pulled down Hull and was called for holding.

"The referee has a got a tough job to do," said McGillis.
"But when we're already down one man and I've got one hand on my
stick and the guy just goes down to the ice, that's a discretionary
call there."

Both players went to the penalty box with 5:06 left in the
period. Shanahan tied the game just 18 seconds later when he
slammed a loose puck into an empty net.

And exactly two minutes after the penalties, Hull gave the Red
Wings a 3-2 lead with No. 700, only to see San Jose tie it with
just 1:26 left in the middle period on Owen Nolan's goal.

Smith gave San Jose a 1-0 lead in the first period when he put
in a rebound. Detroit tied it when Draper scored on a rebound.

But Hull was the story of the night, even if the Sharks had
other worries.

"He's a great player ... it's a great goal for him," Nabokov
said. "It's not a great goal for us."

Game notes
Hull's first career goal came on Nov. 13, 1986, as a
member of the Calgary Flames. Nabovov was 12 years old in his
native Kazakstan at that time ... Detroit defenseman Chris Chelios
missed his eighth straight game with a leg injury. ... Smith's goal
was his first in 87 games. His last goal had come on Nov. 6, 2001.
... San Jose coach Ron Wilson's uncle, Johnny Wilson, attended the
game. Johnny Wilson is a former Red Wings player and coach and
lives in the Detroit area.