DETROIT, JAN. 26 -- Brett Hull says one reason for his success is his ability to stay on an even keel. But balance was difficult to maintain as he sought to become the fifth player in NHL history to score 50 goals in the first 50 or fewer games of a season.

"Usually, I'm not a very excitable player," the St. Louis Blues star said. "But I was getting nervous because it seemed like it was dragging on forever. Adam {Oates} told me at dinner {Thursday} that I was really getting uptight."

But Hull completed the difficult feat Friday night in Detroit when he scored two goals in a 9-4 rout of the Red Wings, giving him 50 goals in 49 games.

The 50th came 1:30 into the third period, when he beat Dave Gagnon with a wrist shot.

Gagnon, who made his NHL debut at the beginning of the third period, laughed about becoming part of history just 90 seconds into his major league career.

"I've been waiting for this all my life, and I'm already in the record books," Gagnon said.

Hull joined some fast company.

Wayne Gretzky, the NHL's all-time leading scorer, has managed the 50-in-50 feat three times, and Mario Lemeiux, Mike Bossy and Maurice Richard have done it once. Among those who have not done it are Hull's father, Bobby, the high-scoring, Hall of Fame winger of the Chicago Blackhawks.