Has Russia overtaken the #1 spot in World Hockey?
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12-11-2012, 10:33 AM
Join Date: Dec 2010
Originally Posted by
So, you have a tournament that was largely held on North American soil (except once), took place in the summer months, employed NHL officials, and was won largely by North American (re: except for 1981) teams throughout its entire history.
Do I believe that Europeans put a lot of stock in this tournament? No, and it's pretty obvious why.
Now you've got another tournament that was largely held on European soil (except once), took place during the NHL playoffs, employed European trained officials, and was won largely by European countries throughout its entire history (once you get past the era of black and white television).
I wonder where I could be going with this.
In regard to the Canada Cup, its almost impossible to say which was better, the Soviet Union or Canada. Even after Alan Eagleson barred European referees from the medal rounds in 1984, thereby greatly diminishing (if not eliminating) the chance that a European team could win, those tournaments came as close to being a draw as you could possibly get. The Soviets beat Canada in the Final in 1981 by a score of 8-1 with a European ref, Dag Olsson of Sweden, which is why Euro refs were eliminated from the medal round thereafter. In 1984, the Soviets beat Canada 6-3 in the round robin with Olsson refereeing, but lost to Canada 3-2 (OT) in the Semis with an American ref. In 1987, the Soviets and Canada tied, 3-3, in the round robin, and then played consecutive 6-5 games (Soviets, Canada [2 overtime periods], Canada). Total goals in the 4 meetings between the Soviets and Canada in 1987 were 17-16 in favor of Canada. In 1991, the two teams met once, and tied 3-3. After 1991, hockey began to disintegrate in Russia for about 12 years, but during the Soviet era when hockey was strong, there was no difference between Gretzky, Lemieux, Messier, Borque, Coffey, etc., and the great Russian stars of the time.
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