As we get ready for the NHL Playoffs, and we debate who the favorites are and what teams could go on a Cinderella run, it’s remembering one of the greatest upsets in sports history.
The “Miracle on Ice” is the name given to the U.S. Men’s Olympic hockey team’s victory over the Soviet Union at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, New York. It is considered one of the greatest upsets in sports history, as the Soviet team was heavily favored to win not just this game but the gold medal itself.
The U.S. team was made up of amateur and college players, while the Soviet team was composed of experienced professional players who had dominated international hockey for years. In the semifinals of the tournament, the U.S. team faced the heavily favored Soviet team, which had won the previous four Olympic gold medals.
The game took place on February 22, 1980, and was watched by a live audience of over 8,000 people and an estimated 34 million television viewers in the United States. The Soviet team scored the first goal, but the U.S. team quickly tied the game and eventually took a 4-3 lead in the third period. The Soviet team pressed hard to tie the game, but the U.S. team held on to win the game 4-3.
The U.S. team went on to win the gold medal by defeating Finland in the final game of the tournament. The “Miracle on Ice” has since become a symbol of American patriotism and sports achievement, and the game is widely considered one of the greatest moments in American sports history. The event is so well known that a movie was about it in 2004.
So, when you’re debating with your friends whether or not anyone can beat the Bruins or Avalanche in the playoffs this year, just remember that no one thought the Soviets would lose.