Born in Bratislava, Czechoslavakia in 1956, Peter Šťastný was one of the most prolific scorers in the NHL throughout the 1980’s. Only one player scored more goals than Šťastný during the 80’s – some guy named Wayne in Edmonton. The defection of the Šťastný brothers (Peter & Anton) in 1980 paved the way for many future stars to escape from behind the Iron Curtain and find fame and success in the NHL. In 1981 their brother Marian joined them and the three brothers became only the third brother trio in NHL history to play for the same team – the Quebec Nordiques.
Šťastný exploded on to the NHL scene shattering numerous NHL records, some of which still stand to this day. He scored his first NHL goal against NHL legend Tony Esposito. Over a two-day period in February 1981, Peter and Anton put on an incredible show – on February 21 each of the brothers scored a hat-trick to lead their team to a 9-3 win in Vancouver, less than 48 hours later, Peter scored four goals and Anton three as the Nordiques won 11-7 against the Capitals (team mate Jacques Richard also notched up a hat trick during that game).
Šťastný spent 16 productive years in the NHL – the most memorable of which were with the Quebec Nordiques from 1980 to 1990. After departing the Nordiques he spent two seasons in each of New Jersey and St. Louis before retiring in 1995. Peter racked up 450 goals and 789 assists over 977 NHL career games. Peter also suited up and captained the Slovakian team in several international tournaments.
Šťastný’s career highlights and achievements include:
- First player in NHL history to collect over 100 points in a rookie year (109).
- First European player to score 1,000 points in the NHL.
- Shares NHL record for assists by a rookie (70).
- Holds NHL record for points in a game by a rookie - four goals and four assists.
- Holds NHL record for points in a road game - four goals and four assists.
- Holds NHL record for points in two consecutive games with 14.
- Scored 19 Career Hat Tricks.
- Calder Trophy recipient in his Rookie year
- Six NHL All-Star game appearances
- Inducted into the International Ice Hockey Federation's Hall of Fame in 2000.
- Inducted to Hockey Hall of Fame in 1998
What’s Peter doing now?
Šťastný had always been a vocal opponent of the communist regime in his home country. After leaving hockey he decided to do something about it and entered politics being elected to the European Parliament in 2004 and was an MEP in the Slovakian Parliament until 2014.
Peter is also a very proud and busy Hockey Dad – his son Paul currently plays for the Las Vegas Knights and his other son Yan made his NHL debut in 2005 with the Oilers and now plays professional hockey in Germany.
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