The Overtime Winner #3: Miracle on Ice
It is hard to believe that one of hockeys greatest moments celebrated it’s 33rd anniversary today. Team USA’s victory of the Soviet Union at the 1980 Winter Olympics became known as the ‘Miracle on Ice’ and has served as inspiration for countless players, teams and fans for more than three decades.
In many ways it is hard to comprehend the magnitude of that victory in the modern game. Whilst Belarus deserve a ‘nod’ at this point for their victory over Sweden at the 2002 games, Team USA took a group of amateur’s and college kids to the 1980 games and beat one of the most successful international outfits in history.
The Soviet Union had won nearly every Olympic gold and World Championship since 1954 and their roster contained some of the games best players at the time. This dominance seems to only further the achievement – Team USA beat perhaps the best team on the planet at that time!
From Herb Brook’s legendary speech to Al Michael’s immortal “Do you believe in miracles?”, it’s hard not to get swept up in the moment even just writing about it now.
Jim Craig, Mike Eruzione and their team mates went on to become some of the most famous men in America over night. Even now they are some of the most celebrated names in US sports and the event was voted the greatest sporting moment of the 20th century in a Sports Illustrated poll.
And just to top it off, they completed the dream by winning the gold medal a few days later.
Now if you’ll excuse me, I think I need to go and put ‘Miracle’ on…
The Overtime Winner is a collection of my favourite hockey moments – it’ a little self indulgent, a little sugary and rose tinted at times but simply put I wanted to get all nostalgic over some happy times as a hockey fan.