Sweden Was No Picnic For Our 1972 Boys
In 1972, Team Canada decided to play two exhibition games in Stockholm in preparation for the final four games against the Russians in Moscow. It was a way to have some ice time on the bigger ice, to deal with jet lag, to work on some things, and to have some solid European opposition before the main event took place. It wasn’t supposed to be serious, it was intented to be a bit of a brief vacation on their way to Russia. But because of what had happened in the first four games in Canada, losing two, winning one and tying one, the Swedish exhibition games became much more, because the Canadians were now in an ugly mood.
Canada played two games in Sweden, winning game one, 4-1, and tying the Swedes 4-4 in game two. Wayne Cashman almost lost his tongue when Ulf Sterner decided to insert it in Cashman’s mouth, and Swedish fans booed our boys incessantly for their hard-hitting and rough play. Their media also came out strong and labelled the Canadians a bunch of dirty rotten thugs and gangsters. The Canadians also got a first glimpse of the biased and inferior refereeing they would later encounter in Moscow. Team Canada didn’t have the fun they thought they were going to have in beautiful Stockholm.
This is a program from the Swedish games, with Ken Dryden as cover boy.