Ken Dryden believes that the eight-game summit series between Canada and the Soviet Union in 1972 has always been more important in hockey than anything else.
“This series is clearly the most important moment in hockey history. It’s not Canadian hockey history, it’s hockey history,” the Hall of Fame goalie said Thursday on the eve of the 50th anniversary of the first game. Tell NHL.com it was an amazing game The Soviets cheered 7-3 at the Montreal Forum on September 2, 1972. “Until that moment, hockey was definitely a Canadian game,” Dryden said. “We are the originators of hockey, the developers, the best people in the world at hockey. Our way is the hockey way. “Others may play differently, but that’s their fault. Different means disadvantage. Being different is fun, but if being different is a disadvantage, who cares? In that series, the Soviets showed another way to play and another way to prepare to play. ” The late photographer Denis Brodeur, Martin’s father, took a series of legendary photos that captured Paul Henderson’s (right) goal of the summit series. Denis Brodeur Collection/Melchior DiGiacomo, Getty Images At the 1968 Olympics in Grenoble, France, the Soviets defeated a Canadian amateur team 5-0 and finished in a On the way to gold. Canada won the bronze medal, and leading bombastic Soviet coach Anatoly Tarasov boasted that his team could beat the best the NHL could throw at him. The Canadian Hockey Association accepted the challenge and negotiated with the Soviet Union through NHL Players Association president and player agent Alan Igerson to establish an eight-game series that would take place in September 1972. Two nights later, Canada bounced back from Game 1 humiliation with a 4-1 run in Game 2 in Toronto. The teams drew 4-4 in Game 3 in Winnipeg on September 6, before the Soviets won 5-3 in Game 4 in Vancouver on September 8. With the loss of Game 4, many Canadian teams with the support of the team, Phil Esposito emptied their hearts on live TV after the game: “To the people all over Canada People, we tried our best, we tried our best,” he said. “To those who boo us, gosh, I’m really… all of us are down, we’re down, we’re down for some…. If the Russians boo their players, then I’ll come back to Every Canadian apologizes, but I don’t think they will.” Esposito continued that the team is for the love of the country, not the money. At that point, a nation realizes that these players really care about what they sign. Ken Dryden prepares for Soviet Boris Mikhailov’s shot with Alexander Yakushev on the side and Canadian defender Gary Bergman on the right. Melchior DiGiacomo, Getty Images returns home to Moscow, where the hosts won 5-4 in Game 5 on September 22 for Canada’s Back-to-Wall Rally and Three straight victories (3-2, 4-3 and 6-5) laid the foundation. Sept. 24-28 – Won the series 4-3-1. Paul Henderson has won each of his last three victories, becoming a national icon in the process. “It’s the most vivid and rewarding hockey experience I’ve ever had,” said Dryden, author of the new book, “Series: What I Remember, How I Feel, How I Feel Now.” “If you ask every player on the Canadian team, I think they would say that. We’ve played on a lot of Stanley Cup winning teams. Even on those teams, we’d play different roles, which It’s how we feel. You can’t predict how you feel. You can’t schedule how you feel. You can’t force yourself to feel a certain way. What you feel is how you feel. That’s what happens. “I think Oddly enough, it was really interesting and enlightening, and I think almost all the players in the Soviet team would say the same thing. They won various world championships and Olympic gold medals, but they didn’t win the series. ” Phil Esposito sparred with an official during a match in Moscow with Canada’s Brad Park on the left and Soviet Union’s Alex Lagulin on the right. Melchior DiGiacomo, Guy Tee Images Dryden was the most dominant goaltender in the NHL in the 1970s, a standout for the Montreal Canadiens. He won the Stanley Cup six times and the Vezina five times Trophy was the NHL’s top goalie and was the NHL’s Rookie of the Year Award in the 1971-72 Calder Trophy after winning the Cummes Trophy as playoff MVP. Dryden was named to the Hockey Celebrity in 1983 Don, was named one of the 100 Greatest NHL Players at the 2017 League Centennial Celebration. But all these achievements are due to his experience with Team Canada in the Summit Series. Half A century later, these eight games are still the defining moments of the game – for the vastly different play styles, for the dramatic Cold War politics of the time, for a series that wasn’t at all predicting a knockout game for Canada. Over the years, there have been The World Championships, Olympics, Canada Cup and World Cup games as well as various tours and one-offs between NHL teams and former Soviet teams. But no series has the importance of a summit series, and no other series will be politically conscious Forms play against each other or reshape the way hockey is played. Soviet Valeri Kharlamov leads his team in a warm-up at the Montreal Forum before the first game on September 2, 1972. Melchior DiGiacomo, Getty Images “The way the Soviets played was eye-opening,” Dryden said. “It took a while for those minds to fully open, but in that series After that, people did start to think about training differently – off-ice training and its value. In training on the ice, passing fits the pattern you play. Once there is a second way of playing, there is a second way, a 5th way, a 10th way. “The players started imagining different ways of doing things, envisioning them, practicing them, making them come true. The coaches did that too. It’s all a legacy of that series.” It started largely The unknown Soviets, who were ridiculed for their mismatched equipment, destroyed Canada in the first game. The opener got off to a surprising start, with the home side leading 1-0 30 seconds later thanks to a goal from Esposito and 2-0 with 6:32 remaining on Henderson’s goal. Soviet goalkeeper Vladislav Tretiak watches his first game in the fog of a sultry night at the Montreal Forum. Melchior DiGiacomo, Getty Images But the superiority of the Soviets soon became apparent. They scored two goals at Dryden before the end of the first quarter, one shorthanded and two more in the second. Canada’s Bobby Clark gave a glimmer of hope to Soviet goalie Vladislav Tretiak at 8:22 in the third quarter, but then the Soviets played in 5:5 The embarrassment ended with three unanswered goals. Defenseman Pat Stapleton, a member of Team Canada, has worked tirelessly to promote the series, its historical significance and its legacy — in schools, on the street and everywhere in between — until his death in 2020. Sitting at the Montreal Forum in 2016, where the hockey field was demolished 20 years ago with a building renovation after the Canadiens moved to the Bell Centre, Stapleton recalled 1972 and remembered the first game sensation. “We got in the car after the race and I was sitting by the window when Ken (Dryden) sat next to me,” he recalled. “He turned to me and said, ‘What happened? I remember saying, ‘I think we lost our composure.'” Sitting almost without a word, headed to the airport and flew to Toronto for Game 2 On the flight, Stapleton or Dryden had little idea that Canada as a country was having a mental breakdown. At training camp in August 1972, the 35-member Canadian team gathered in Toronto. Bottom row from left: Tony Esposito, Brad Park, Stan Mikita, Phil Esposito, Coach Harry Sinden, Playmaker Alan Eagleson, Assistant Coach John Ferguson, Frank Mahovlich, Jean Ratelle, Bobby Orr, Ken Dryden. Second row from left: Executives Bob Haggert, Dennis Hull, Mickey Redmond, Paul Henderson, Red Berenson, Wayne Cashman, Vic Hadfield, Ed Johnston, Bill Goldsworthy, Ron Ellis, Rod Gilbert, Executive Mike Cannon. Third row from left: Trainer Joe Sgro, Yvan Cournoyer, Gary Bergman, Dale Tallon, Bill White, Peter Mahovlich, Serge Savard, Jocelyn Guevremont, Gilbert Perreault, Pat Stapleton, Trainer Frosty Forristall. Top row from left: Massage therapists Karl Elieff, Marcel Dionne, Bobby Clarke, Don Awrey, Brian Glennie, Rod Seiling, Guy Lapointe, Richard Martin, Jean-Paul Parise, facility manager Tommy Naylor. McDonnell Stewart/Hockey Hall of Fame “The game we want to forget,” Canada’s defenseman Sergi Savard said with a smile. “Games we don’t want to talk about.” If this series made Henderson’s Game 6, 7 and 8 game-winners a national icon, it’s not just a one-man hero deeds. On September 28, 1972, with 34 seconds left in Game 8, Canada won with a dramatic goal from Henderson. 16 million of the 22 million Canadians watched the final game, which began televised at 12:30 p.m. ET. Between 9:30 a.m. on the West Coast and 2 p.m. in Newfoundland, the country held its breath as the vast majority of Canadians gathered around televisions at work and in classrooms. A dozen books on the Summit series have been published in English, including books in French and Russian. Has written academic papers and produced documentaries; the latest of the latter is a film titled “Summit 72,” which will premiere on CBC Canada on September 14 for four consecutive one-hour Wednesdays. The 75-year-old educator, lecturer and award-winning author Dryden’s new book, one of the few published for the 50th anniversary, is his deeply personal take on the series. Savard, who formed the “Big Three” of the Canadiens’ defense in front of Dryden in the 1970s with Larry Robinson and Guy Lapointe, thinks the summit Hockey games in the series are over 480 minutes long. After the 8th game in Moscow, Canada and the Soviet Union shook hands. The players here include goalkeepers Kendall Leyden (second from right) and Vladislav Tretiak (20). Melchior DiGiacomo, Getty Images “It’s not our fault that it turned into a political series. We don’t want that,” Savard said of the players. “When we went there, the Russians were leading the series, and these people wanted to show the world that they were doing things the right way, that they were training the best, and that they had the best athletes in the world. “All of a sudden, we wake up and say, ‘Hey, we invented this game, not you. ‘ And yet (Soviet leader Leonid) Brezhnev sat behind the net in a corner. This is a political issue and we are caught in the middle. ” The political realities of the day doomed international reunion plans, and no member of the Soviet team came to Canada to celebrate the half-century anniversary with members of the Canadian team. But Dryden hopes they too will remember an era The series. “Finally,” Dryden said, “it had an impact on both of us because of its strength and difficulty and hardness. In the end, neither of us got what we wanted, and both sides we got what we needed. “We want to win the series by a big margin in eight straight games. We need to win the series. They want to win the series. They need to prove they can play the top league in a different way. They did it, we Got what we needed. I think they’re really proud of what they did, and I think we’re proud of ourselves for doing what we needed to do.”