Friday, February 22, 2008

28 Years Ago

The U.S. beat Russia in the biggest upset in sports history. So many good things about that game (and the gold medal win two days later against Finland)come to mind. From watching the games with my father to personally knowing two fellow high school teammates who were invited to try out for the Olympic team. (neither made it but if memory serves me right Mike Nitti made it to either the final cut or the one before that) Russia always fielded the best players, all were in their mid 20's to early 30's, all but one of our players were 20 or younger. It would be the equivalent of 20 Curt Massie's (that's me you morons) against Wayne Gretzky, Mario Lemieux, Mike Bossey, Dennis Savard, Brett Hull, etc.... and me winning. And that's not an exaggeration. I was only 14 at the time and it still brings a tear to my eye.

And we can't have a video without a stand alone of the famous call from Al Michaels, "DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES? YES"


Anonymous Anonymous said...

The romantic notion that a bunch of college scrubs felled the world’s greatest team through sheer pluck and determination is misguided. Brooks spent a year-and-a-half nurturing the team. He held numerous tryout camps, which included psychological testing, before selecting a roster from several hundred prospects. The team then spent four months playing a grinding schedule of exhibition games across Europe and North America. The players included Neal Broten, Dave Christian, Mark Johnson, Ken Morrow and Mike Ramsey, who would go on to impressive NHL careers.
Brooks suggested that a bronze medal was within reach. Then came a pre-Olympic exhibition game against the Soviets. The wide-eyed Americans were manhandled 10-3.
So Feb. 22nd 28 yars ago was not a miracle, it was an accident.

February 23, 2008 10:43 AM  
Anonymous jane said...

28 years ago was a Great time. I remember watching this same game. Now that I don't live near a city with a hockey team very seldom see a game. Saw a few Blackhawks games many years ago.

February 23, 2008 12:12 PM  
Blogger Capitalist Infidel said...

Actually anonymous, you're either lying or just plain wrong. Only 16 of the 27 U.S. Olympic team played professional hockey. For the intellectually challenged that's barely 59%. Most had mediocre careers, while Neal Broten was by far the best of the group he only made the all star team twice in his 17 year career. Not only that he wasn't even a point a game player throughout his career 923 points in 1099 games, compare that with Mike Bossy (notice I didn't bother with the greats like Gretzky or Lemieux) 1126 points in only 752 games. Or even Dennis Savard 1336 points in 1196 games. It's not worth noting the rest because their pro careers were in most cases lengthy but mediocre at best.

You think that maybe the U.S. team learned a little after being blown out 10-2? Like.....oh, I don't know....maybe playing more physical, taking the quicker skaters off their game? Can't learn much when you win a blowout.

While the Russian team outshout the U.S. it wasn't by an extreme amount, we all know a hot goalie can steal a game for you, which is exactly what Jim Craig did. Actually they "only" had 39 shots on goal and Craig made 36 saves. Oh, and did you know Jim Craig only played in 30 NHL games?

Herb Brooks was as hard nosed a coach as you can find. He made the players HATE him, with a passion! It made the team rely on each other that much more. He knew his team was outclassed in all categories except size, he knew if he could get his players to take out their aggression on the Soviets it was the only chance they had (along with a hot goaltender) and that's exactly what happened.

As I just proved it was no accident, it was truly a miracle that everything that was set in motion by coach Brooks came true. When the players execute to perfection the game plan implemented by the coach it's not an accident it's, in most cases a "miracle."

February 23, 2008 2:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

If it was no accident, how many more times did they win playing with Russians? (Or they learned too little?)

February 24, 2008 12:50 AM  
Anonymous lee said...

I don't know who anonymous is,but one thing is certain he didn't use his real name. And I would not use my real name if I knew no more than he does. I'm a woman and feel that I know more than he does. When I read his comment I could not believe what I was reading. Well, the poor fellow thought he knew it all. He knew just enough to make a fool of himself. We have all known people such as that.

February 24, 2008 6:04 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

And what exactly is there to know? Americans accidently won the game from 2nd level Russian team, and it never happened again, and you've been celebrating that day for 28 years. It's radiculous.

February 24, 2008 10:32 PM  
Blogger Capitalist Infidel said...

It was impossible for them to win again for they never faced the Russians again. Like I said 16 out of the 27 turned pro right after the gold medal game with Finland.

Let me ask you something, was it an accident that Buster Douglas beat Mike Tyson? Was it an accident that Kirk Gibson hit a home run off Dennis Eckersly on one leg? Was it an accident when Villinova beat Georgetown? When N.C. State beat Houston?

I guess to you any upset is an accident

February 25, 2008 10:12 AM  
Anonymous ray said...

I don't know as much about hockey as you do but that person who calls himself anonymous does not seem to know too much. I meet people like that sometimes, who think they know it all.

February 25, 2008 9:18 PM  
Blogger Capitalist Infidel said...

I don't know how else to explain it, the 1980 U.S. team could never win again since they were never together again. Can you understand that?

And you're damn right we're still celebrating the greatest upset in sports history. The United States (at least those who don't have a vicious hatred for the country) will be celebrating that victory for many more decades to come. Our college kids against a professional all star team that was together for years.

February 25, 2008 10:59 PM  
Anonymous lee said...

That dumb anonymous keeps on talking. Could be that he is mentally deficient. People with brain disturbances cannot understand any form of pride any American may have in this country.
Thank you blogger for being a patriotic American.

February 26, 2008 1:39 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yeah, Lee, I keep talking. By the way, I didn't see any smart thoughts coming out of you eather.
I would understand if American team started winning since that game, but one game in the whole history of Olympic games...Of course that worth to be proud about.
And Russian team was a second level team, they were too in their 20th.

February 26, 2008 10:17 PM  
Blogger Capitalist Infidel said...

anon, please provide proof that the Soviet team was "second level." You can't because it's a lie, the soviets fielded the best team possible with their best players. That was all they had over the U.S., they could play their professionals while we played our college kids.

Oh, and you really are showing your ignorance. The 1960 U.S. Olympic hockey team also won the gold medal.

February 27, 2008 10:44 AM  

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