Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Summit Series '72, Game 7. "Tsygankov - he cost us the victory"

Henderson's 2nd consecutive Game Winner

Ted Blackman, Sports Editor of The Montreal Gazette begins his column on Game 7 as follows;
The Russians steadfastly refuse to single out heroes when they win, claiming all players are equal in a collective team effort, but after a loss… brother, better pack the long johns for the trip north.
"Gennadiy Tsygankov — he cost us the victory," Vsevolod Bobrov declared in a rare burst of frankness after Canada stole a 4-3 victory from Rusia last night to square the series and set up tomorrow night's showdown for the Borscht Bowl.
Tsygankov was the goat on Paul Henderson's winning goal with little more than two minutes to play. He was rooted to the ice as Henderson slipped the puck through his skates, dashed behind him to pick it up and fired a high shot past Vladislav Tretiak at 17:54.
"Never got more personal satisfaction out of a goal," Henderson said of his sixth score of the series and second winner in as many games. "I didn't see it go in, he tripped me after I shot, and when the light didn't go on I was worried." 

Henderson's beauty can be seen by clicking here.

His goal with 2:06 remaining in the third period would even the series at 3 wins and a tie apiece.
Coach Sinden said afterwards, "This has forced an eight game - which might well be the most exciting game of hockey ever played."

Jim Coleman  in The Calgary Herald eloquently describes the Paul Henderson winning goal;
Let me tell you something about Henderson's winning goal.
The teams were playing five a side because Gary Bergman and Boris Mikhailov were serving five minute penalties, after they attempt to precipitate outbreak of Third World War.
Well, there was a faceoff in the Canadian end and, just before the puck was dropped, Henderson caused a delay by skating over to Bobby Clarke but Clarke turned around to look at his defenceman, Serge Savard and Guy Lapointe. Bobby motioned to Lapointe, Indicating that he wanted him to move over, slightly to the left and behind the faceoff circle.
Then, for approximately the 500th time in this international series, Bobby Clarke won a faceoff. The puck slid back swiftly into the corner to his left. Lapointe got the puck and cleared it behind the net to Savard.
Meanwhile, old Paul was heading for dreamsville and he really was tramping. There was smoke coming from Henderson's skates as he headed across mid-ice. Savard gave him a hard leading pass just before Paul reached the red line. At that point, Henderson gave a long blast on his whistle, just like a runaway locomotive, and he bore down on two startled Soviet defencemen.
Henderson was moving so swiftly that the defenceman didn't even get his number. He shoved the puck through the feet of the defenceman (Tsygankov) to his left. The puck hit the heel of one of the defenceman's skates as Henderson made an abrupt diversion around the poor chap. The puck was waiting for Henderson, behind the bewildered defenceman and, Paul promptly hung that puck in the net. His rising shot performed a neat depilatory job on goalie Tretiak's right armpit.
That was the sixth goal which Paul Henderson has scored in his series. However, from the viewpoint of most Canadians, it was the most important goal of his entire lifetime.

A few notes from Ted Blackman after the game:
  • Kharlamov didn't play, his ankle still hurting from a Bobby Clarke slash. "I'm surprised he can walk, let alone limp," Clarke says. Alex Maltsev moved over to left wing and Eugeni Mikshakov took over the centre position on the line.
  • Sinden indicated he would go with the same lineup for the final game, the only change being the insertion of Dryden in goal. He planned to alternate Dryden and Esposito no matter what.
In an interesting aside, Blackman writes about how some members of Team Canada viewed the play of teammate Brad Park.
  • Mention Brad Park's name and half the Canadian team begins growling off-the-record. "He's not trying and wears that silly smirk all the time," one said. "Beats me why Harry keeps playing the bum." Park was on the ice for three goals by Russia and carries most of the responsibility for the ineffective NHL power play. He can't organize a rush. In 17 power play chances, Canada has scored only once and had three goals against (shorthand goals).
Interesting, I thought.

Celebration after the winner.

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