1982 Soviet/Czech 0-0 tie

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by reckoning, Dec 13, 2005.

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  1. reckoning

    reckoning Registered User

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    The situation: The final game at the 1982 World Championships featured the Soviet Union against Czechoslovakia. The medals were determined by most points in the tournament. The standings prior to this game were:

    U.S.S.R. 9-0-0 18 pts
    Canada 5-3-2 12 pts
    Czech. 5-3-1 11 pts

    The Russians had the gold medal clinched. The Czechs would win the tie-breaker for the silver if they were tied with Canada. So basically, if the Russians win, Canada gets the silver; if they tie or lose then Canada gets the bronze.

    The result: A 0-0 tie. But the controversy was over how the game was played. It was described in Canadian papers the next day as the Russians not trying to win. Countless dump-ins, icings, offsides and a very low shot total. Darryl Sittler said after watching the game that the tournament had lost most of it`s lustre after that display.

    The question: Was the fix in? Mike Gartner claimed that years later one of the players told him it was. Has anyone here seen the game and was it as bad as described? Did the game receive the negative press in Europe that it did in Canada? Did the IIHF ever attempt to investigate the matter, or did they turn a blind eye towards it? And most importantly: if the Russians did do it, why?
     
  2. Psycho Papa Joe

    Psycho Papa Joe Porkchop Hoser

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    IMO the fix was in. The IIHF basically turned a blind eye to it. The Russians did it to ensure communist countries could finish 1-2. It was likely a situation where they wanted to show the superiority of the communist system. Sportsmanship was secondary. The players were likely following orders from the communist party and if they didn't follow them, their lives could be a living hell.
     
  3. wilka91*

    wilka91* Registered User

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    IMO their lives were a living hell anyway, even when they followed orders.
     
  4. Peter25

    Peter25 Registered User

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    How about Canada losing 0-9 to Sweden in the 1987 World Championships? Sweden needed a huge victory to win the gold and Canada literally gave it to them.
     
  5. svetovy poharu

    svetovy poharu Registered User

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    The 0-0 tie was described in the European press as "lacklustre" and the game drew jeers from the Helsinki crowd. The Canadians said the USSR purposely made an earlier arrangement with Czechoslovakia so that the Czechoslovaks would not be deprived of the silver medal. The Soviets considered these suspicions as ridiculous, because the meetings against Czechoslovakia were always of extreme importance, both sporting and political, much more than against a "capitalist" country like Sweden for example. At least this is what the official party line at the time said.

    It was Igor Larionov who in later years revealed that coach Tikhonov had ordered the team not to play to win, on orders from Moscow. Team Canada boss Alan Eagleson was livid, saying he was disappointed for the Canadian players. And team captain Bill Barber added: "I think the Russians lost a lot of respect by just going through the motions."

    Wayne Gretzky, in this the only World Championship he ever played, said: "Whether the Soviets threw the game or not is everyone's own opinion. In my opinion they played for the tie. In the last 10 minutes of the game, Makarov and Krutov (the KLM line) were on the ice just once. That wasn't a good sign. They're both Communist countries and I think Communists stick together. But as Bobby Clarke said, it was no one's fault but our own that we didn't win the silver medal. When we tied Italy we lost it."

    Rick Vaive, also playing in the Worlds for the first time, conceded that there is no way to prove the Soviets deliberately played to a scoreless tie with Czechoslovakia.
    "You can't say for sure that they threw the game. But there's no doubt they didn't play the same way against the Czechs that they played against the other teams."

    Czechoslovakia - Soviet Union 0:0
    Referee: Terry Gregson (CAN) - Linesmen: Schell (HUN), Wiking (SWE)
    Penalties: CZE 1/2:00, URS 1/2:00, Spectators: 8297, Shots: CZE 43, URS 26

    CZE: GK: Kralik - DEF: Kadlec, Horava, Uvira, Planovsky, Chalupa, Dvorak -
    FWD lines: Korbela, Novy, Richter -- Lala, Kokrment, Cernik -- Hrdina, Pasek, Pouzar -- V. Lukac, Ihnacak, Liba

    URS: GK: Myshkin - DEF: Kasatonov, Fetisov, Vasiliev, Babinov, Bilyaletdinov, Pervuchin - FWD lines: Makarov, Larionov, Krutov -- Tumenev, V. Golikov, Kozevnikov -- Gimaev, Zluktov, Khomutov

    As for the 9 - 0 Sweden win over Canada on May 3, 1987, the Soviet Union felt that the Swedes were able to score goals far too easily. After the Swedish romp, the Soviets would have to score at least 9 goals against Czechoslovakia to win the gold. The USSR won 2-1 and that cost both the Czechoslovaks and Soviets a shot at the gold. The outcome was a very bitter one for the Soviets because they went through the 1987 world tournament undefeated (8 wins, 2 ties) but still didn't get the gold.

    Team Canada chief Al Eagleson said that a Soviet reporter had asked if Canada's loss was planned and he replied: "I said that we couldn't have contrived to play like we did. Then Victor Tikhonov asked if we had done it on purpose." To which coach Dave King said: "To suggest such a thing is a tremendous insult to Canadian hockey players. Anyone who says it just doesn't know anything about our players and their attitude."
     
  6. svetovy poharu

    svetovy poharu Registered User

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    edit to above post:

    Omitted the fourth line from Soviet lineup: Shalimov, Shepelev, Kapustin
     
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