Dobbin's quick hat trick turns 20

RYAN PYETTE -- London Free Press

, Last Updated: 9:38 AM ET

Trainer Don Brankley calls it the best shift he's seen in junior hockey.

Twenty years ago today, London forward Brian Dobbin scored three goals in 26 seconds for the Knights in Sault Ste. Marie.

"I remember it could've been four in the same shift, but I ended up passing off," Dobbin said yesterday. "Three was enough for me. I think I got into a fight the next shift."

Dobbin, now 39, didn't think about the historical significance at the time. If a Knight achieved a similar feat in today's OHL, he'd be doing interviews for the next week.

"I just went back to the bench and thought, 'Well, this is pretty good,' " he said.

"There was just less attention paid to those kind of records at that time. I remember I had the OHL consecutive goal-scoring streak record (18 games), and then (Peterborough's) Mike Ricci came along a couple of years later to make it 19 games and it got national media attention."

Dobbin's ultra-quick hat trick remains a Knights record, but it wasn't an OHL or CHL mark because Ottawa's Tom McDonell scored three in 24 seconds on Dec. 10, 1976, against Sudbury, while Estevan's Jim Harrison buried three against Regina in the same span during a WHL game Dec. 4, 1966.

"Brian was always a natural goal scorer," Brankley said, "but none of those three were particularly pretty."

Dobbin finished with 38 goals and 93 points that season, his last with the Knights. A Philadelphia draft pick, he played 63 games with the Flyers, but spent most of his time shuttling between Philly and Hershey, Pa., where the Flyers' AHL team played.

Dobbin, from Petrolia, is married with three children and now lives in London, selling real estate.


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