Before Perestroika, the Communist countries couldn't always afford all the equipment they needed ...
Uhh, I believe it has more to do with Vlado Dzurilla's traditionalism than with lack
of money. Quite a few NHL-ers play without a visor, and it's not because they're too poor to get one.
Actually, hockey was receiving a very good financial support from the state before 1989 in Czechoslovakia and virtually all talented kids had the opportunity to play without troubling their families' budgets, which is not the case as of today.