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40th Anniversary Hockey Rematch Planned, Russia vs. Canada

25. January 2012 by Masha 0 Comments

Do you remember the Summit Series of September 1972? Originally named the Friendship Series, four games were played in Canada and four games were played in the Soviet Union during the height of the Cold War. Intense feelings of nationalism made it a very competitive and exciting series.

 

The games showcased many great Soviet players previously unknown in North America, such as Valeri Kharlamov, Alexander Yakushev and especially Vladislav Tretiak. Against the stiffest competition they had ever faced, Team Canada revealed the leadership of prolific scorer Phil Esposito, as well as the quieter contributions of solid NHL veterans like Paul Henderson and Gary Bergman.

 

Russia's sports minister Vitaly Mutko is currently planning a 40th anniversary match in honor of those legendary games.

 

"We have a working group, we have found partners on the Canadian side and sent them an invitation. We plan ceremony along with a hockey match on February 26. I don't rule out that the match will take place on Red Square," Mutko said.

 

Out of the 30 hockey stars who have been invited to take part, four had already accepted: Former Boston Bruins and Colorado Avalanche defenseman Ray Bourque; Finland's former Edmonton Oilers forwards Jari Kurri and Esa Tikkanen; and Paul Henderson, who scored Canada's winning goals in the last three games of the summit series, securing victory for Canada.

 

Others who have been invited include Phil Esposito, Bobby Hull, Paul Coffey, Mark Recchi, Dale Hawerchuk, Wayne Gretzky, NHL commissioner Gary Bettman and International Ice Hockey Federation chief Rene Fasel.

 

Watch this incredible video highlighting the Game 8 nailbiter from 1972!

 

Source: RIA Novosti