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10-24-2012, 03:23 PM
Big Phil
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Originally Posted by Sentinel View Post
What keeps on bothering me is that, in spite of decent success of Soviet teams (NT and clubs) against Canada and NHL teams, individual talents of the Soviet players are often belittled or even ignored. This defies logic. Soviet teams either barely lose to Canada (72, 87) or even beat them (74, 79, 81), and yet how many Soviet players do we find in the Top 100?
I guess a lot of it has to do with having such a small sample size to choose from. Yes, the Russians skated with us in these short tournaments and give them full marks. The only issue which is impossible to overcome is that we can never know how each of those players would have fared over an 80 game schedule in the NHL night in and night out facing top notch talent. We can only project whether or not Tretiak wins a Stanley Cup or a Vezina or two. We can assume that Makarov would be as good as Kurri was in the 1980s. But we really can't know for sure which makes placing them hard.

As for the original question, Cheevers had the worst game of his life in Game 3. I don't know why Bowman left him in there or why he didn't keep Dryden for Game 3 and let either one of Esposito or Cheevers try to win Game 2. Some of the goals look bad for Cheevers in Game 3 as well. It was at the end of his career which is telling (I don't think he bombs like that had he played in the 1972 Series) but this game never gets the negative press that Liut's 1981 game gets and it should.

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