Twenty years of Soviet Hockey: 1962 - 1982
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08-02-2011, 09:50 PM
Join Date: Mar 2007
Location: Philadelphia, PA
LW Alexander Bodunov
2x World Championships Gold Medalist
4x Soviet League Champion
1974 Best Line Award Winner in Soviet League
Study of 2nd tier Soviet scorers
As you can see, Bodunov has a better domestic GPG average than all of these guys, except Yakushev despite being picked much, much later than most. His international GPG isn't as impressive, but considering where he was picked in comparison to these guys being not so far off is still quite good. Offensively, he is on the same level as a lot of these guys that were picked way before him.
Alexander Bodunov was one of the top scorers of the Soviet hockey in the 1970's
. As an essential part of the promising Lebedev-Anisin-Bodunov line, he began his career playing for the Red Army club and, then,
led the undistinguished Krylya Sovetov Moscow to the gold medals of the Soviet championship in 1974. His line was instrumental in various international tournaments played by Team USSR in that decade. Bodunov had an extremely powerful slapshot. He was famous for his goals scored after an instant rapid shot made without any visible preparations.
Alexander Bodunov left quite an impression on fans in Winnipeg during the 1972 Summit Series.
Bodunov was one of the members of the Soviet's "Kid Line," also dubbed the "Headache Line" by Canadian broadcaster Brian Conacher
. Bodunov was the left winger who was introduced along with fellow linemates Viacheslav Anisin and Yuri Lebedev in game three of the series.
This trio re-energized the Soviets when the debuted in Winnipeg. The Soviets handily won game one, and even though they claim they felt like they played better in game 2, lost convincingly to a recharged Team Canada.
Game three was in many ways a very pivotal match. It ended in a tie but was a moral loss for Canada.
The key for the Soviets early success was the element of surprise they could utilize, as Canada knew almost nothing about their opponent. After two games Canada had learned much about them.
Then the kid line entered the scene.
Canada didn't pay much attention to these three unknowns prior to the game. Why would they? These three youngsters surely couldn't be better than any three players they replaced - if they were they would have been playing since game one. And the Soviets had publicly said that these three were being inserted so that they could "learn" and make themselves better players for the future.
But the Kid Line, as dubbed by the Canadian media, played a pivotal role in the game. Canada held a 4-2 lead half way through the second period when these kids took over. First at 14:59, Lebedev brought the Soviets back to within one goal. Then, with about 1 and 1/2 minutes left in the second stanza, Alexander Bodunov snapped home a shot from the crease to beat Tony Esposito and knot the game at 4.
Bodunov's goal proved to be the final goal of the game, as goalies Esposito and, in particular, Vladislav Tretiak shut the door.
After making quite a name for themselves in game 3 in Winnipeg, the Kid Line was not often heard from again, at least not as far as Canadians knew. The big names like Kharlamov, Petrov, Mikhailov and Tretiak would continue to be great players, but the three heroes of game 3 did not join them as Soviet stars.
The trio did leave CSKA Moscow to join Boris Kulagin to join Krylja Sovetov. The trio led the Moscow based team to an upset victory over CSKA in 1974 to claim the USSR league championship.
But they were not always used on the national team, or would be used separately, as the 1970s progressed.
On one night he could be the best player on the ice
, but the next he would be nowhere to be found.
He had a great arsenal of hockey talent, featuring his heavy shot and creative play making
Meanwhile, to everyone's surprise, Vsevolod Bobrov and Boris Kulagin made 5 changes to the Soviet team,
inserting youth and more speed. The line of Alexander Bodunov and Yuri Lebedev, centered by Vyacheslav Anisin, I later dubbed the "Headache" Line, as that was what they became for Canada.
Bodunov and Lebedev produced the last two Russian goals for the tie and Anisin, for fast, fast relief, helped set up both. At the end of the game, the young trio was skating strongly while Canada's veterans were tiring again.
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