Yesterday, with 24 seconds left in the game, Paul Henderson's winning goal
completed an incredible comeback victory for Team Canada and left the place of sports, Lenin Central Stadium, echoing to the lyrics of O'Canada.
The final score of 6-5 for the Canadians and the series victory of four wins, three
losses and a tie, barely begins to describe the political confrontations that came with the emotional eight game series.
The "on-ice" contest was seen as another facet of the Cold War, and a definite example of how political international sports can be. The Canadian team represented the Free World in a showdown against Communism. In the words of Phil Espisito, 'It was not a game. It was our society against their society.'
And as such the Soviet team had no intentions of facing defeat to the Canadians on
Hardships facing the Canadian Team were abundant. The officiating in
Russia was dreadful, blatantly favouring the Soviet team.
Though it was agreed
that both teams were able to elect one official each, Russia was still in control as they chose referee Josef Kompalla who had horrendously officiated game 6 and 7, and was no different in game 8. Players even found that their rooms had been bugged, their food had gone missing, and prank phone calls in the middle of the night disrupted their much-needed sleep. But it was these factors that made the Canadian team more emotional and more determined to win the final game.
Led by Phil Esposito, the Canadians were relentless in their efforts during the final game. The Canadian Team wanted nothing less than a victory and this
was attained with the efforts and persistence of Paul Henderson. With just 34 seconds left to go in a tied game, Paul Henderson after being tripped...