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  • "Forgotten Miracle"

    I was given this DVD in my stocking for Xmas and just got finished watching it. For those of you who have either not heard of it, or have yet to watch it, I highly recommend it.

    The Forgotten Miracle is the story of the 1960 USA Olympic Hockey Team that won Gold at Squaw Valley. In doing so, the team beat the Czechs, the Canadians, and the Soviets. It is an amazing feat and represents the first time the USA won gold in hockey at the Olympic Games.

    A few really interesting tid-bits that I hadn't known prior:
    1) Herb Brooks was the last guy cut from this team because Bill Cleary wanted his brother Bobby to play on the team with him. It turned out to be the right decision, but ouch.
    2) Herb Brooks asked Bill Cleary to address the 1980 USA Olympic team prior to playing the Soviets. I did not know that.
    3) John Mayasich was really the first offensive defenseman (prior to Bobby Orr) and was a converted forward - He had a heck of a career for the Gophers. He could score and rush the puck up the ice just like a forward.

    I would love to hear from some folks who either attended the Olympics or were alive and can remember the sentiments surrounding this team.

    What a story! If you want to buy, see link below:

    http://www.neoflix.com/store/GOL91/GOL9131FOR02-C

  • #2
    Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

    Originally posted by bothman View Post
    I was given this DVD in my stocking for Xmas and just got finished watching it. For those of you who have either not heard of it, or have yet to watch it, I highly recommend it.

    The Forgotten Miracle is the story of the 1960 USA Olympic Hockey Team that won Gold at Squaw Valley. In doing so, the team beat the Czechs, the Canadians, and the Soviets. It is an amazing feat and represents the first time the USA won gold in hockey at the Olympic Games.

    A few really interesting tid-bits that I hadn't known prior:
    1) Herb Brooks was the last guy cut from this team because Bill Cleary wanted his brother Bobby to play on the team with him. It turned out to be the right decision, but ouch.
    2) Herb Brooks asked Bill Cleary to address the 1980 USA Olympic team prior to playing the Soviets. I did not know that.
    3) John Mayasich was really the first offensive defenseman (prior to Bobby Orr) and was a converted forward - He had a heck of a career for the Gophers. He could score and rush the puck up the ice just like a forward.

    I would love to hear from some folks who either attended the Olympics or were alive and can remember the sentiments surrounding this team.

    What a story! If you want to buy, see link below:

    http://www.neoflix.com/store/GOL91/GOL9131FOR02-C
    I wasn't alive for this, but I've come to know some of the guys on the team personally over the years and it's about time they got their due. The media coverage they got back then was a tiny fraction of what they'd get today. Cleary and Mayasich were two of the greatest American players ever, and both would have been NHL stars if they had chosen to be pros. McCartan was a goalie who played very well that tourney, but like Jim Craig, was unable to parlay it into a great pro career. The rest of the guys faded into relative obscurity. It's too bad the Squaw Valley (Blythe) Arena is no longer standing, so there is no place to really imagine it now beyond pictures, film and stories.

    Blythe Arena (before the 1980s snow collapse killed it):
    http://lh6.ggpht.com/_m0AY-010Fg0/Ss...rial-Arena.jpg
    Last edited by Puck Swami; 01-14-2010, 02:24 PM.

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    • #3
      Originally posted by bothman View Post
      2) Herb Brooks asked Bill Cleary to address the 1980 USA Olympic team prior to playing the Soviets. I did not know that.
      I didn't know about this one.

      Comment


      • #4
        Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

        Got this and the pond hockey DVD. Both are excellent. Something else that surprised me was the color footage showing the Soviets wearing blue and the fact that the game was played at 8:00 in the morning with few in the stands to start.
        "Hockey is the only tribe I belong to." --Jack Falla

        "Why, as a matter of fact, I suggested starting a hockey program to Father Callahan, our president. He was downright interested until we came to the use of sticks, and then he threw up his hands. He said, 'No, that game is not for our University. Notre Dame will never endorse any game that puts a club in the hands of an Irishman.' " -- Knute Rockne: All American

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        • #5
          Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

          Actually, the Soviet game was played in the afternoon before a packed house. The last game, against the Czechs, started at 8AM and had few in the stands at the beginning.

          Another interesting tidbit is how the Soviet captain came in to the USA dressing room between the 2nd and 3rd periods of the Czech game to give advice (to take oxygen due to elevation). He did not want a Soviet state to win a medal if the Soviets could not.

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          • #6
            Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

            I was 13 when the USA won the Gold in Squaw Valley. I do remember watching the games. John Mayasich was awesome throughout, but so were many others (those you mention). The Christian Brothers (Billy&Roger) played significant roles. McCartan was spectacular. That event spurred the first boom in the growth of the game at all levels. It was unfortunate that the NHL had only 6 teams then. Many members of the 60 team could have made the next step. Mayasich chose the Communications carreer instead of hockey and did extremly well. Tommy Williams made it with Boston. Christians went back to Warroad and established their hockey stick business. Cleary went back to Harvard and his numbers there speak for itself. Nearly every player went on to help grow hockey in the US and then 1980 happened. Just look where we are today, and let's not forget the 1972 Team in Sapporro. Talk about a FORGOTTEN team.
            lackahockey

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            • #7
              Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

              Originally posted by stizostedion vitreum View Post
              I was 13 when the USA won the Gold in Squaw Valley. I do remember watching the games. John Mayasich was awesome throughout, but so were many others (those you mention). The Christian Brothers (Billy&Roger) played significant roles. McCartan was spectacular. That event spurred the first boom in the growth of the game at all levels. It was unfortunate that the NHL had only 6 teams then. Many members of the 60 team could have made the next step. Mayasich chose the Communications carreer instead of hockey and did extremly well. Tommy Williams made it with Boston. Christians went back to Warroad and established their hockey stick business. Cleary went back to Harvard and his numbers there speak for itself. Nearly every player went on to help grow hockey in the US and then 1980 happened. Just look where we are today, and let's not forget the 1972 Team in Sapporro. Talk about a FORGOTTEN team.
              Thanks for the input walleye! I hope things are well for you and miss seeing your side of things in college hockey.
              Michigan Tech Legend, Founder of Mitch's Misfits, Co-Founder of Tech Hockey Guide, and Creator/Host of the Chasing MacNaughton Podcast covering MTU Hockey and the WCHA.

              Sports Allegiance: NFL: GB MLB: MIL NHL: MIN CB: UW CF: UW CH: MTU FIFA: USA MLS: MIN EPL: Everton

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              • #8
                Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                Originally posted by stizostedion vitreum View Post
                I was 13 when the USA won the Gold in Squaw Valley. I do remember watching the games. John Mayasich was awesome throughout, but so were many others (those you mention). The Christian Brothers (Billy&Roger) played significant roles. McCartan was spectacular. That event spurred the first boom in the growth of the game at all levels. It was unfortunate that the NHL had only 6 teams then. Many members of the 60 team could have made the next step. Mayasich chose the Communications carreer instead of hockey and did extremly well. Tommy Williams made it with Boston. Christians went back to Warroad and established their hockey stick business. Cleary went back to Harvard and his numbers there speak for itself. Nearly every player went on to help grow hockey in the US and then 1980 happened. Just look where we are today, and let's not forget the 1972 Team in Sapporro. Talk about a FORGOTTEN team.
                Lefty Curran in goal for USA? Silver medal if I recall...would love to hear more about that team...
                License to kill gofers...From the government of the United Nations. - Carl Spackler, Caddyshack

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                • #9
                  Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                  I was 11 years old in 1960 and didn't know a lot about hockey.

                  I can't recall actually watching any games, though I know that I was ultimately aware that the United States had won the gold medal.

                  I really did not fully appreciate the significance of the achievement when it happened. At that age, I think I sort of expected that the United States could beat anybody at anything. My father tried to explain to me what a tremendous upset it had been, but I couldn't quite grasp the concept of the USA as underdog.

                  Years later, when I had a better idea of how US amateur hockey players normally stacked up against some other countries' national teams, I wished that I could have gone back in time and watched those 1960 games live, without knowing the outcome. I'm sure I would have had a much better appreciation for what was taking place.

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                  • #10
                    Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                    Yes, Lefty was the tender. Tim Sheehyfrom Int'l Falls and Boston College was there. Huffer Christianson UMD and I Falls, Donny Ross from Roseau, Dick McGlynn, Henry Boucha Stu Irving, Wally Olds, just a few I remember playing with or against.Think Carl Wetzel i think was the 2nd goalie. Murray Williamson was the coach. Great guys,all of them. Had lots of fun with them over the years
                    lackahockey

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                    • #11
                      Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                      I'm just glad to see walleye posting again. I think I was one who outed his secret identity and may have caused him to stop posting. I apologize for that.

                      Glad to see his insights on the board again.

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                      • #12
                        Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                        I believe that was the last Olympic with an outdoor rink. There was a roof and, if you saw the Russian game, you'll remember the shadows of the supporting columns moving across the ice.

                        I worked with Billy and Bobby Cleary in the early 80s when they were inducted to the US Hockey Hall of Fame. With another friend, I got the original film from the game from the network and had it transferred to, IIRC, VHS. At the party they were stuck in front of the tv watching the game that they played in but never had a chance to see.

                        I've alwayus considered this to be a bigger upset than 1980. The reason Bobby came in late was because he couldn't afford to miss work.
                        Originally posted by mookie1995
                        bc is superior to bu in nearly everything. while it is sad that it has come to it, it's the truth. if bu doesn't like it, improve.
                        Rep from Hokydad -"and your an old never been piece of ****"

                        Originally Posted by Dirty
                        Why is anyone surprised that Old Pio is acting like a grumpy old f^ck? He is a grumpy old f^ck.

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                        • #13
                          Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                          The Blyth Olympic Arena at Squaw Valley was enclosed on three sides and had a roof with one open side. Seating capacity was 8,500 and they packed 10,000 in there with standing room for the US medal round games. It collapsed in the 1980s, and is now a parking lot for the ski area.

                          *******http://lh6.ggpht.com/_m0AY-010Fg0/SsksnB3YEKI/AAAAAAAABSY/HKPsMSrjyYI/Blyth-Memorial-Arena.jpg********

                          It was indeeed the last partially outdoor arena for the Olympics.

                          The last roofless Olympic Arena was in Cortina D'Ampezzo, Italy where the US won silver in 1956. It still stands, but has since been enlosed with a full roof and a glass wall on the once-open side.

                          *******http://www.iz3bsu.com/stadio%20olimpico.jpg********
                          Last edited by Puck Swami; 01-14-2010, 02:50 PM.

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                          • #14
                            Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                            Originally posted by Puck Swami View Post
                            The Blyth Olympic Arena at Squaw Valley was enclosed on three sides and had a roof with one open side. Seating capacity was 8,500 and they packed 10,000 in there with standing room for the US medal round games. It collapsed in the 1980s, and is now a parking lot for the ski area.

                            http://lh6.ggpht.com/_m0AY-010Fg0/Ss...rial-Arena.jpg

                            It was indeeed the last partially outdoor arena for the Olympics.
                            Thanks for the picture link. Imagine sitting in that place with 10k people watching a gold medal game in that setting with one open wall. How cool would that have been?

                            Too bad it wasn't preserved. Evidently they added insulation to the roof making it too heavy and leading to it collapsing.

                            Insulation for and outdoor rink's roof? Sounds like a good idea!

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                            • #15
                              Re: "Forgotten Miracle"

                              Originally posted by Gurtholfin View Post
                              Thanks for the picture link. Imagine sitting in that place with 10k people watching a gold medal game in that setting with one open wall. How cool would that have been?
                              Here is a shot of that Gold Medal game vs Czechoslovakia:

                              *******http://onfrozenblog.com/files/2009/12/HockyUSAvsCSR2.jpg********
                              Last edited by Puck Swami; 01-14-2010, 03:08 PM.

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