What was a worse catastrophe for Canadian Hockey?

Discussion in 'The History of Hockey' started by Big Phil, Sep 21, 2005.

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  1. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    Okay for those of us who are old enough to remember the panic surronding Canada's biggest losses in internatioanl play which one do you think gave us the most panic?

    First off: Start with the '79 Challenge Cup when the Russians pummelled Team NHL 6-0 in the third game. Yeah it was more of an all-star game but it was still very embarassing then throw in the '81 Canada Cup when we lost 8-1 to them and panic city started to fall over us. Throughout that decade we needed OT to eliminate the Russians in '84 and '87 so it wasnt easy after that but from '79 up until Bossy's OT goal in '84 it was panic that the "Commies" were better than us.

    The one I remember the most is '96 and '98. First off, the USA had a good team on paper in '96 that matched up with us very well I must admit. And when we lost the Round Robin game to them 5-3 I started to panic. Then we lose in the final to them and it was a big uproar because Americans are "stealing" our game! Then we stupidly build a '98 team that is built to beat the Americans. Unfortunatley it wasnt built to beat anyone esle and the Czechs ands even the Finns beat us. For four years we had to here how the Euros have more skill than us and how Canadians cant play Hockey anymore. It didnt help that we weren't winning the WJC either. All was right with Canada after Salt lake City and then '04.

    But which one do you think was a worse crisis for us?
     
  2. octopi

    octopi Registered User

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    Too young to remember the first ones, but the 98 fourth place finish
    in the Olympics caused a lot of "The sky is falling" cries, mostly from media. I think anyone rational realizes that no country is good enough to continually win everything, and why overreact?
    Czechs dominated hockey from 1998-2001. Before that, it was the Swedes, Russians, and yes, Canada. Right now? Canada again, with, of course, the Czechs coming back up nicely. What goes around comes around. Competition is a good thing, what good would it be if one country/team was just smacking everyone down, how intresting would that be?

    The point? Don't Panic.

    Canada will win, Canada will lose. As will every country.
     
  3. Phousse

    Phousse Registered User

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    Well, I don't know about every country. ;)
     
  4. LePoche69

    LePoche69 Registered User

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    Gretzky's trade to a US team... Bertuzzy incident... Bobby Clark' slashing against Soviets in 1972... Canada-Russia brawl at the junior tournement... Don't have time to write other things...
     
  5. Hyped

    Hyped Registered User

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    Both of these instances are good examples of popular culture meshing with political culture. Losing to the Soviets was the worst feeling at the time. People started to question a lot of things. How could a team full of communists defeat the New World's democracy? It was the same thing in '72, but Canada happened to come out on top in that contest.

    Then in '96, the Americans defeat us in World Cup action and Canadians begin to feel threatened by the manifest destiny of the US of A. Now the Americans are going to take our sport too? Again, politics and popular culture butt heads. In reality, had Sather not been a such a moron and put two centerman out in the final few minutes for a defensive zone draw, we may have went to OT and who knows what would have happened then? (my rant for this post)

    So I don't think you can really choose one over the other. Both occured during political/culture crises. The Soviets defeated Canada during the Cold War years and the US defeated Canada at a time when Canadians were trying to make a name for themselves and stop being America's little brother/sister...
     
  6. Maken*

    Maken* Guest

    I'll agree with the Gretzky trade.

    The others don't bother me though.
     
  7. Chili

    Chili Registered User

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    On the ice I still remember the brawl at Piestany.

    Off the ice, the Swift Current Broncos bus crash.
     
  8. Riddarn

    Riddarn 1980-2011

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    I think the next country to dominate the international hockey scene could be the USA. They have alot of really nice talent coming and while alot of other countries also have that, I feel the USA hockey program is doing alot of things right at the moment, especially at younger age groups. Things like that tend to continue up through the ranks and rub off on everybody.
     
  9. svetovy poharu

    svetovy poharu Registered User

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    After researching Canada's past 85 years of international competition, I would have to say the first panic occurred back in 1954 at the World Championships in Sweden.
    This was the debut of the Soviet National hockey team.

    Canada was represented by the Toronto (East York) Lyndhursts, a senior B team.
    The Lyndhursts easily won their first 6 games allowing their opponents a total of only 5 goals, before facing the also undefeated Russians in the final game of the tournament for the Gold medal. The Russians produced a major upset by beating Canada 7-2 in the title game sending shockwaves throughout Canada.

    Looking at the Globe & Mail, Toronto Daily Star and Montreal Gazette archives from March 8, 1954, reveals the magnitude of that loss in great detail. One headline reads: "Reds give us lesson in game we invented, Russians were much too good."

    According to the Montreal Gazette, Canada didn't lose the world's amateur hockey championship to Russia. Toronto lost the title. The Gazette sports page headlined its story: "Russia drubs East York 7-2 to win world hockey tourney." A sub-headline read: 16,725 in Stockholm watch Toronto lose. In fact, no mention of Canada appears anywhere in photo captions or headlines.

    Headline on front page of Toronto Daily Star: "How On Earth Did Those Russians Manage to Do This to Our Canadian Boys?" Another headline reads: "Heap Criticism on Hockey Brass for Defeat by Soviets." The articles are numerous and cover many pages of the newspaper. This debate and criticism over the loss to Russia continued in the papers daily through March 12.

    The Canadian Amateur Hockey Association was the target for most of the blame by Canada's sports columnists and government officials. It even led to a challenge for a rematch from the Toronto Maple Leafs to play the Soviet team to restore hockey supremacy back to Canada.
     
  10. Steveorama

    Steveorama Registered User

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    The following year, a Senior Team called the Penticton Vees from B.C., hammered the Soviets, not only beating them 5-0, but beat the hell out of them physically, too.
    But the tide was already turning. Within 10 years, the Soviets would be the dominant team in amateur hockey for years to come.
     
  11. Injektilo

    Injektilo Registered User

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    I think the gretzky trade led to the growth of the game into stratopheres that Quebec City and Winnipeg couldn't reach, leading to the loss of two NHL teams from Canadian cities.
     
  12. Claypool_*

    Claypool_* Guest

    :biglaugh:
     
  13. Injektilo

    Injektilo Registered User

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    excellent point.
     
  14. Claypool_*

    Claypool_* Guest


    I was laughing at the fact that you think the NHL is somehow "canadian hockey".
     
  15. Roughneck

    Roughneck Registered User

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    '96 and '98 are definitely NOT the worst catastrophes, one could argue they were the best thing for Canadian hockey. It showed that we weren't anywhere near as invincible on the ice as we thought we were and caused a complete overhaul of Canadian hockey from top to bottom and helped launch us into where we are today.
     
  16. Injektilo

    Injektilo Registered User

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    oh, i thought the title of the thread said "worst catastrophe for canadian hockey" , not " ... for the NHL".


    my mistake.
     
  17. CupDrought67

    CupDrought67 Registered User

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    The ignorance of what this thread has become, no doubt.
     
  18. reckoning

    reckoning Registered User

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    Exactly what was overhauled between `98 and `02? Why does there have to be a huge panic over every loss Canada suffers internationally? No team, no matter how great, wins every game. Instead of lamenting every loss, look at the big picture. Even with those losses mentioned earlier, Canada has still done far better in best vs. best competition and player development than any other country. It`s not even close.

    If you guys were New England Patriot fans, would you be happy that they won the Super Bowl, or would you fire everybody because they lost two games in the regular season?

    Sweden hasn`t won an important tourney in quite some time. Why no panic or criticism over that?
     
  19. octopi

    octopi Registered User

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    From what I understand Swedish hockey fans have been very critical of their teams spectacular failures in light of the talent level they boast.
     
  20. Form and Substance

    Form and Substance Registered User

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    Tommy Salo was crucified after Salt Lake.
     
  21. Injektilo

    Injektilo Registered User

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    Nothing was necessarily overhauled, but there was that Open Ice summit held in 1998 on the state of minor hockey in Canada, and I remember the Globe and Mail had a 15 part look at problems in Canadian hockey...


    Perhaps there hasn't been any panic in Sweden because the game doesn't have quite the same cultural hold?
     
  22. Roughneck

    Roughneck Registered User

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    And after '98, Hockey Canada had an overhaul, in personnel, philosophy, coaching, managing, how it picks teams, when, what kind of teams it wants etc. Even at the World Championships, a tournament we rarely expected to win, we have become a favorite every year again. There was a concern growing in the '90s that Canadian hockey had a problem, it took those losses to do something about it. I don't care if teams aren't supposed to win every game, but an 8th place finish at the WJCs (and losing to Kazakstan), losing the World Cup and going medaless in the Olympics after decades of saying "With professionals we'd win" had better cause something to be done for a country that prides itself on its hockey.

    The Olympics and World Cup is the regular season of international hockey?

    Like mug shots with NHL salaries as the number bar in the major newspapers?

    Hockey isn't the premiers sport in Sweden, there is definitely criticism, but it isn't matched with the same public outcry as hockey is in Canada.
     
  23. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    Hmm, I'm trying to remember back in '96. Which defensive zone draw are you talking about? I remember game three of '96 and Hull's goal and then Amonte's goal were not caused by a lost face off. Just wondering what part of the game you mean.
     
  24. Big Phil

    Big Phil Registered User

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    Just out of curiousity I can remeber when the Soviets were considered the best that would be from '79 to about '84 when they lost to Canada and of course the Czechs win in '98 and then win three straight World Championships from '99-01 and two WJC '00 '01. And of course Canada has been the best out of anybody the most since '72 but when was it that the Swedes were ever considered the best in the World? I'm just lost here. They won the WJC in '81 if I remember correctly then won the Silver in '93, '94 and '96. They havent medalled since then. They also havent ever won a Canada Cup or Olympic event of the best on best. All I can think of is in '94 when they won the Olympics with the amateurs.

    In Canada Cup/World Cup/Olympics best on best tournaments Canada has a 9-2 record against the Swedes. I'm just wondering when in the world at any time was Sweden the best Hockey country in the World?
     
  25. Form and Substance

    Form and Substance Registered User

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    I remember us winning the first game 3-2 in OT and that was deemed controversial because some said Brind'Amour (not sure if it was him, was he even on the team?) went offside. And then the Americans tied the next game with about 6 seconds to go in the third period, pretty sure Modano had the goal.It WAS a defensive zone faceoff. They ended up winning in overtime too after like ten minutes of play if I recall correctly.
     
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