Morgan Rielly is going down in history.
The 24-year-old is having a fantastic start to the 2018-19 NHL season with 12 points through five games.
With this sensational start, Rielly surpasses Bobby Orr’s 45-year-old record for the most points by an NHL defender through the first five games of a season (in the modern era).
Morgan Rielly has 12 points in the first five games of the season.
That's only happened 23 times in the last 30 years in the NHL. Never by a defenceman. (Only four times by anyone since 1995.)
— James Mirtle (@mirtle) October 12, 2018
Orr previously held the record for best offensive start by an NHL defenseman through five games with 11 points. He accomplished the feat. 45 years ago and it wasn’t matched until Thursday night in Detroit.
Here’s a look at how Reilly beat Orr’s record with his performance against the Red Wings:
Rielly unleashed a bullet for his 11th point of the season in the opening period:
— Toronto Maple Leafs (@MapleLeafs) October 12, 2018
He surpassed Orr’s record when he set up Auston Matthews for his eighth goal of the season in the middle frame. Rielly also now leads the entire NHL in scoring:
Auston Matthews is the 3rd player in @MapleLeafs franchise history, and 1st in 74 years, to score a goal in each of the team’s 1st 5+ games of a season:
— NHL Public Relations (@PR_NHL) October 12, 2018
What might be most crazy about Rielly’s start is that only six different forwards in the last 30 seasons have had more points through their team’s first five games. He’s simply on another level right now.
Rielly, who was drafted fifth overall by the Leafs in 2012, registered a career-high 52 points last season and has carried that success into 2018-19.
Over the last few years, Rielly’s impressive skating, hockey IQ and playmaking ability have helped transform him into a great all-around blueliner.
Reilly could very well work his way into the Norris Trophy talk this season, especially given his role quarterbacking the lethal first power-play unit that includes Auston Matthews, John Tavares and Mitch Marner.
While Rielly’s start is ridiculous, what Matthews is doing is just as impressive.
According to TSN Stats Centre, Matthews four multi-goal games already tie him for the most goals by a player (9) through their team’s first five games of a season in the modern era (since 1943-44).
A terrific and historic start for two of Toronto’s most important players.