There have been times in American history when citizens aren’t necessarily proud to be American. Some say that people have lost pride in America in 2015 in 1980 the feeling was the same. It wasn’t until the 1980 Olympic hockey game that helped rejuvenate American spirit.
This game was between the American team that was not feared, nor respected and referred to as “kids” versus the rough, and tough Soviet Union team. In America there was a depression, and just before the Olympic games 52 Americans were taken into hostage in Iran and Soviets were bombing Afghanistan.
When Herb Brooks, the most abrasive and intense hockey coach out there, took twenty college students to the Olympic games no one expected them to beat the Soviets. The Soviet Union team were “government sponsored magicians on ice.” On top of that, just three days before the Olympic game the Soviets embarrassed the United States at an exhibition game.
Joseph Barone, my best friend’s uncle, recalls the game saying, “It is the greatest upset in sports history. It’s great that a bunch of kids achieved it. We were barely on the international hockey radar back then. It changed everything for young hockey players and fans. We as fans felt like we belonged after that. Like we belonged with the ‘big boys’ (Canada and Russia).”