A Frenchman called Louis Magnus arranged a meeting, that took place between 15th and 16th of June 1908. The Frenchmen’s guests were Belgium, Great Britain and Switzerland. Bohemia has been mentioned being present too in some sources, but they were not. Though the Bohemians are the only ones being on the top from the very beginning til today, being Czechoslovakia for a long time and is established these days as the Czech Republic. Russia was going to participate the meeting, but came along much later with a tremendous vigour.
With the goalscorers, I have mentioned the best one, whenever possible. When not, I have mentioned all the goalscorers I know.
Later, with the Olympic and the World Championship medal teams (+Finland), there are full rosters. And the best goalscorer/scorer.
With the game series, they are compiled in the traditional European style (games played, wins, ties, losses, goals for, goals against). Sorry, North-Americans!
If anyone has something to add to the missing goalscores, naturally I’ll be pleased to read about it!
1910’s was the beginning for the still going on tournaments of the International Ice Hockey Federation. At this stage the tournaments were about the European Championships, many times a club team being a national team, for example: the Berliner Schlittschuhklub as the Team Germany. Also the Oxford Canadiens participated as a guest team. The protective gear practically didn’t exist, the players playing in Les Avants, for instance, with a jogging-like outfit. But the main thing happened: the opening of the international hockey era.
This first IIHF tournament took place in the backwoods of Montreaux, Switzerland. The conditions could be described being like in an elementary school, but this was the opening anyway. At first only for the European Champion title. The winner was Great Britain with a club team called Royal Prince’s Club London. This team and most of the later British ones had a lot of Canadians in it. The team placed second was Germany, Belgium third and the host Switzerland fourth.
The most superior team beat the participants with a margin from 4-0 to 8-0. And later even the European Champion team. Naturally the Oxford Canadians wasn’t regarded as the European Champion.
Great Britain: Sopwith; Patton, B.Cox; H.Duden, R.LeCron, J.Cox, H.W.Stoner, Macklin (3). (3 3 0 0 7-2)
(2. Germany, 3. Belgium)
The conditions of the tournaments varied radically many times in the early ones. This time the scene of the tournament was the Berlin ice stadium with its artificial ice. The Czechs, having begun playing hockey in 1907, really participated the international hockey in this tournament and have stayed on the top ever since. Their game series included a 4-1 win over Germany, 3-0 over Belgium and even a 13-0 win over Switzerland. The team, then called Bohemia, received a welcome jubilee of thousands of people back home.
Bohemia: Hamacek; J.Fleischman, Palous, Vindys, Jarkovsky (9 goals), Jirkovsky, Sroubek, M.Fleischmann, J.Rublic. (3 3 0 0 20-1)
(2. Germany, 3. Belgium)
Again a dramatic change of tournament conditions. This time on the Slavia Prague stadium, when the gras was seen here and there between the natural ice. Unlike in the previous tournaments, this time Belgium and Switzerland were absent. But now Austria really came in. Because the Czechs were part of Austria at the time, it was possible for DEG Prague to present the country.
In the tournament Fritz Piper did the Austrian scoring debut against Germany. But after the tournament Germany protested for the tied 2-2 against Bohemia. After that it was noticed, that the Austrian IIHF membership had become valid two weeks after the tournament. So, mostly this tournament is regarded as unofficial.
Bohemia: Wälzer; J.Fleischmann, Palous, Vindys, Jarkovsky (3), Jirkovsky, M.Fleischmann, J.Rublic. (2 2 0 0 7-2)
(2. Germany, 3. Austria)
This time the tournament was played on the artificial ice. Switzerland still remained absent, but Belgium did return. One of the players was the forthcoming longtime executive of the IIHF named Henri Van Der Bulcke.
And what kind of a return! These days Belgium is more known for its football, soccer that is, but the Flamish and the Vallons were the European Champions this time. Sadly after this Belgium has remained as a has-been in international hockey. Austrians debut continued this time with losses 1-13 and 4-14 against Belgium and Germany.
Belgium: Vergult; Deprez(7), Franck, Kupez, Gemine, Loicq, Gossens, Folksom, Verges. (3 3 0 0 25-10)
(2. Bohemia, 3. Germany)
The same country with a different location. The Austrians had their obvious reasons to remain absent from this tournament. The Czechs, Germans and Belgians fought for the European hockey supremacy before the fight for the other supremacy: the first World War.
Czechs already thinking nationally had to fight hard to win the Germans 2-0, but Belgium was sent home with a loss of 1-9. This meant practically the end of top Belgium hockey.
Bohemia; Wälzer, Pondelnicek; Rublic, Palous, Loos, J.Fleischmann, Jirkovsky (7), Pesek-Kada, Paral. ( 2 2 0 0 11-1)
(2. Germany, 3. Belgium)
Defenseman: Patton (Great Britain).
Bohemia 2 (+ 1 unofficially)-1-0
Great Britain 1-0-0
Germany 0-3(+1 unofficially)-1
Austria 0-0-0(+1 unofficially)
There were European Championship tournaments through-out the 1920’s, but a great change happened with the prestige of the tournaments. This happened with the Olympic tournament taking place in the Antwerp ice-palace. Also a great deal of new countries entered the tournaments, though Sweden being the only one to reach the top in the long run. The “rover” was dropped off with, so from now on there has been six players on ice.
The Swedes have an honour of hosting the most modest IIHF tournament ever. But this wasn’t their fault. After the Olympic tournament being held in Antwerp 1920 there was an agreement about a World Championship tournament, including Canada and the USA, but finally there were only the Swedes and the Czechs.
Sweden won the only time a tournament at home with an attendance of 7,000 spectators and because of the light the opponents wore sunglasses. This only game of the tournament being played on natural ice made this new piece of Swedish sports that much regular, that the first tournament for national championship took place next spring. Since 1926 the best team has been rewarded with Raoul Le Mat trophy. Him being the American father of Swedish hockey.
Sweden: Säfwenberg; Lindqvist, Lundell(1); Arve, Burman(3), Johansson-Brandius(3), E.Svensson, E.Abrahamsson, Galin, Woodzack. (1 1 0 0 7-4)
In this forthcoming Olympic town Czechoslovakia took the European Championship back from Sweden. This was the case in most European Championship tournaments. Though Switzerland failed with their comeback – losing 1-8 to the Czechs and 0-7 to the Swedes – their success in the World Championship tournaments was a great deal better. And so was the German one. Great Britain was even more successful, but this was because of dual citizenship Canadians.
By winning 3-2 the Czechs became the best Europeans on the natural ice in a beautiful landscape. This time the number of countries participating was three. The Czech super-star of the era, Josef Malecek, made his debut in this tournament.
Czechoslovakia: Pospisil, Rezac; Vindys, Pesek-Kada, V.Loos, Jirkovksy (6), Sroubek, Hamacek, Hartmann, Malecek, M.Fleischmann. (2 2 0 0 11-3)
(2.Sweden, 3. Switzerland)
The Olympic – and the World Championship at the same time – debut had taken place in the ice-palace of this city three years earlier. Now it was time for the European Championship. Surprisingly, Czechoslovakia was even in the shadow of France, gaining only bronze. Sweden continued with great European strength.
This time the tournament got the greatest number of participants so far, five. The odd thing seems to be, that France participated only now for the first time. Maybe they were thinking about the level of the tournament.
Sweden: Jansson; Lundell, Johansson; Brandius, E.Svensson, B.Holmqwvist(7), Björklund, Molander, Tegner. (4 4 0 0 23-6)
(2.France, 3. Czechoslovakia)
This was the Italian debut, both as an organizer and a participant of the tournament! You could say, that il totalitarismo e il totalitarismo; a gam, hardly being started in Italy, was held in an ice-palace! The tournament itself can be considered as surprising.
The winner of tournament was France, much because of its star, Leon Quaglia. His strength was a backround as a speed-skater. Besides Italy, also Spain made its debut in this tournament. This was the first time for Czechoslovakia being absent.
France: Andre Charlet, Pierre Charpentier, Martial Couvert, Albert de Rauch(7+1), Robert George, Hubert Grunwald, Albert Hassler, Leon Quaglia. (3 3 0 0 17-1)
(2.Sweden, 3.Belgium and Switzerland)
By coincidence a new era took place in Czechoslovakian hockey: Prague had prematurely lost its natural ice and people hurried to look for still existing ice. They found ones in the Slovakian side, from the Tatras. So, the audience being enthusiastic, the Slovakian hockey got its beginning.
This time Sweden was absent and this might have made its way for Austria getting its first medal winning position. Very soon after this the country got its peak in success.
Tsekkoslovakia: Peka, Stransky; Sroubek, Pesek-Kada, V.Loos, Jirkovsky, Malecek (5), K.Kozeluh, Vindys, Lorenc, Hamacek, Pusbauer. (3 3 0 0 10-0)
The times they are a-changing! Switzerland gained the top by storm, after participating years without winning! This took place in their beatufiful mountain-landscape natural ice. As one may guess, they guaranteed their championship with a brilliant defence!
Sweden was still absent, and Czechoslovakia gained a silver medal between new European top countries. But this didn’t mean them falling off the top.
Switzerland: Martignoni; Fasel, Dufour, Meng(13), Morosani, Kraatz, Besson, Müller, A.Spengler, Andreossi. (5 5 0 0 30-12)
Austria gained the European Championship on their home-ground. Their success was guaranteed by their coach Blake Watson, a man being very well known also after the tournament. One might add, that the Czechoslovakian coach was called Holmes. The games were being played on the fairy-tale-like artificial ice rink called Engelmann. This wasn’t the last time the rink being used by IIHF.
Hungary made its debut on this tournament, being unsuccessful with even results: losing twice by 0-5 and three times by 0-6.
Austria: Weiss; Spewak, Göbel, W. Brück, H.Brück, Lederer(6), Sell, Rewy, Ditrichstein, Wollinger, Sommer, Tatzer. (5 5 0 0 13-2)
(2. Belgium, 3. Germany)
Hungary was the host of this tournament! But they dropped out already in the qualification phase on their pretty new artificial ice rink. Czechoslovakia gained the last European Championship of the 1920’s.
Poland got surprisingly the silver medal, becoming one with no essential traditions in this piece of sports. Finland was supposed to made its debut on this tournament, but...
Czechoslovakia: Peka, Rezac; Sroubek, Dorasil, Pusbauer, Malecek (5), K.Kozelyh, Vindys, Lorenc, Hamacek, Pusbauer. (3 3 0 0 6-2)
(2.Poland, 3. Austria)
This tournament can be considered as a true beginning of international hockey! The ice-palace of Rue de la Sante near the botanic gardens got the North-Americans as their visitors. The field was real small, 18x56 meters. This probably made it easy for the hosts gaining 2,000 spectators per average in a relatively small arena, the type being used mostly on division II level these days in the top-countries.
Canada was superior in this pre-winter-olympic tournament with its brand new amateur champion, the Winnipeg Falcons. The players of the team were descendants of the Winnipeg Icelanders, the coach being born in Iceland. The USA had an assembled team. Geran had tried in the NHL, but he wasn’t treated like Jim Thorpe earlier. Maybe he was white enough. Team also included some originally Canadians, for example Herb Drury. This time Finland was only presented in hockey by m/s Finlandia, the ship bringing the Americans to the city.
The Europeans were missing all the proper equipment, thus remaining only spectators on the ice. Sweden entered the tournament with its first ice hockey team ever, pushing aside almost every traditional European hockey team. They were managed by an American Raoul Le Mat and played hockey, that was considered rough even by the North-American standards of the day. The tactically more mature Czechoslovakia was the only European team being ahead of them, because of the uneven system of the cup. The father of the system was a Swedish called Bergvall.
Canada: Walter Byron; Konrad Johanneson, Bobby Benson; Chris Fridfinson, Magnus Goodman, Frank Fredrickson(12), Halldor Halderson, Allan Woodman. (3 3 0 0 29-1)
2. USA: Raymond Bonney, Cyril Weidenborner; Edward Fitzgerald, George Geran, Leon Tuck, Frank Goheen, Herb Drury (14), Joseph McCormick, Frank Synott, Tony Conroy. (4 3 0 1 52-2).
3.Czechoslovakia: Karel Wälzer; Otakar Vindys, Jan Palous, Karel Hartmann, Karel Pesek, Josef Sroubek(1), Vilem Loos. (3 1 0 2 1-31).
These games were originally the winter game week of the IOC. A year later the games became officially the first Winter Olympics. One reason being the Nordic countries, thinking about the prestige of the traditional skiing events, for example Falun and Holmenkollen.As usual, the thing turned the other way round, these events being even more popular than ever these days.
This time the tournament took place on natural ice. Canada came also this time with an amateur champion team, this time from the previous spring. The modest name of the team was the Toronto Granites. Their goalscoring rate wasn’t that modest. Neither it was with the Boston AAA from USA. But also they couldn’t match their northern neighbours. The US star of the tournament was Herb Drury with his 22 goals. He happened to be the same Canadian-born, who played in Antwerp four years earlier.
Canada’s game series was following: winning USA 6-1, Great Britain 19-2, Sweden 22-0, Czechoslovakia 30-0 and Switzerland 33-0. All these being the biggest losses in a single game of these countries ever. While Canada’s game stats of 110-3 in five games is the biggest ever. Also the 37 goals of Harry Watson is the greatest number ever by a single player in a single tournament. A Canadian-born player Blane Sexton scored a hat-trick against Belgium. This Great Britain team was the only European one to gain more scored than allowed goals in any tournament of the 1920’s. But that’s with a little help from Canada...
Canada: Jack Cameron, Ernie Collett; Duncan Munro, Beattie Ramsay, Hooley Smith, Cyril Slater, Harry Watson(37), Bert McCaffery, Harold McMunn. (5 5 0 0 110-3)
2. USA: Alphonse Lacroix, John Langley; Irving Small, Clarence Abel, Herb Drury(14), Justin McCarthy, Willard Rice, John Lyons, Frank Synott, George Geran. (5 4 0 1 73-6).
3. Great Britain: William Anderson, Lorne Carr-Harris; Colin Carruthers, Eric Carruthers(12), Ross Cuthbert, Edward Pitblado, Hamilton Jukes, Blane Sexton, George Holmes, Guy Clarkson. (5 3 0 2 40-38).
These were the first real Winter Olympics, with no games behind the scenes. The hockey tournament took place on natural ice this time too, the field being probably used for football and track and field in summer. Canada participated again, but the US didn’t. The AOC did think about sending a college team, but the team trials – arranged by the American Hockey Association - took place a bit late. Before the final deadline the Association was willing to send a team, but still the AOC said no. Still the North-American superiority continued; when the organizers saw the practice of the Toronto Graduates, the team was immediately sent to the final series as a “defending champion”.
When Sweden started its hockey practically from nothing eight years earlier, this tournament became their climax so far. The feast was started by Sigurd Öberg, him scoring against Czechoslovakia (3-0). The line Holmqvist-“Lulle” Johansson-Petersen also played brilliantly. Also a basic thing for their success was the defence-duo Abrahamsson-H.Johansson. “Björnungen” Johansson has been considered as the best goalie of this tournament. Sweden later succeeded well, when some other top countries didn’t participate.
But one still has to consider Joseph Sullivan as the most legendary goalie of the tournament. He played a total shutout in the tournament – allowing no goals at all in his three games. The only other goalie playing all the tournament games reaching the same was the other Canadian called Art Puttee a bit later. Switzerland’s superstar made his debut in this tournament – Bibi Torriani scoring his first goal, and being not even seventeen. But their best scorer was still Dufour (3). Now everyone had proper equipment, no-one laughing at them. Like the Europeans had done in Antwerp.
Canada: Joseph Sullivan, Norbert Mueller; Frank Fisher, Roger Plaxton, John Porter, Ross Taylor, Hugh Plaxton, Louis Hudson, Dave Trottier(12), Charles Delahay, Grant Gordon, Bert Plaxton, Frank Sullivan. (3 3 00 38-0).
2. Sweden: Bengt Johansson, Kurt Sucksdorff; Carl Abrahamsson, Emil Bergman, Gustaf Johansson(5), Henry Johansson, Ernst Karlberg, Erik Larsson, Bertil Linde, Sigurd Öberg, Vilhelm Petersen. (5 3 1 1 12-14).
3. Switzerland: Adolf Martignoni; Gianni Andreossi, Murezzan Andreossi, Robert Breiter, Louis Dufour(3), Charles Fasel, Albert Geromini, Fritz Kraatz, Heinrich Meng, Anton Morosani, Luzius Rüedi, Richard Torriani. (5 2 1 2 9-21).
Goalie: Joseph Sullivan (Canada 1928)
Defenceman: John C..Porter, Ross Taylor (Canada 1928)
Forward: Harry Watson (Canada 1924).
Great Britain 0-0-1
In this decade the IIHF started to arrange the annual World Championship tournaments between the Olympics. The Olympic tournament was considered a World Championship as well, except for 1932, when it was the only time in addition to 1924 Chamonix/Milan, when there was a separate European and Olympic/World Championship. The number of the participating countries increased slowly, but steadily.
Because of the incident on Wall Street a few years earlier the Olympic Tournament in Lake Placid lacked several European top countries. This was obviously the main reason for the last separate European Championship tournament for decades, before the European Hockey Tours of the 1990’s.
This last European Championship tournament for years was won by Sweden. The Austrian took the silver and Czechoslovakia the bronze. For some reason these countries didn’t do that well in the World Championship tournaments of the time.
Sweden: Carlsson, Karlsson; C.Abrahamsson, Lindgren; S.Öberg, G.Johansson(5), Fürst, B.Lundell, E.Larsson, J.Nilsson, Persson, Petersen. (6 5 1 0 12-2)
This was the first World Championship tournament arranged by the IIHF on its own, though from 1920 til 1968 the Olympic tournament was considered as a World Championship too. The situation in the USA was like the Wall Street crash; one of the leaders was worried, if the American hockey would survive til the 1932 Lake Placid Olympics. So; no US team this time. According to common knowledge, Canada was being presented by the Allan Cup winner: Port Arthur Bearcats. It took only a bit over 70 years to correct this mistake. Though the team was the first one to lose an exhibition game against a team from Europe (Austria in a rainy weather), that didn’t finally matter. The team won the essential game: the final. Within a bit over six years the Toronto CCM had become one of the top teams in Toronto, after a modest start in the Toronto and York Mercantile League.
Japan entered an international tournament for the first time with the medical students team, but they lost 0-5 for Poland. While the games continued, the natural conditions became intolerable. So one game took place on the artificial ice of Vienna. And the final in Berlin sport palace, a fully covered arena. This was a brilliant coincidence, since Germany was the other team in the first World Championship final. They also opened the goalscoring by Gustav Jaenecke. But inevitably the Canadians, though not being from the top leven of the Allan Cup, won the game 6-1. After the game the captain Howard Armstrong shook hands with his colleague, Gustav Jaenecke, who had broken his collarbone.
Switzerland continued it triumph on medals, because Geromini had made two goals against the Austrians in the Cup-form tournament. But their brand new star, Torriani, couldn’t help his team with his goal against the Germans. Sweden had given up its game against theAustrians. No wonder, since this year even in the birth region of Finnish ice hockey, Tampere in the province of Häme, grass was growing on natural hockey ground even in January!
Canada: Percy Timpson; Wallace Adams, Howard Armstrong, Albert Clayton, Gordon Grant, Joseph Griffin, Donald Hutchinson, Alexander Park(2), Frederick Radke. (1 1 0 0 6-1).
2. Germany: Walter Leinweber; Rudolf Ball, Alfred Heinrich, Heinrich Herker, Gustav Jaenecke(9), Franz Kreisel, Günther Kummetz, Erich Römer, Martin Schröttle, Marquardt Slevogt. (5 4 0 1 14-11).
3. Switzerland: Albert Künzler; Robert Fuchs, Albert Geromini(3), Fritz Kraatz, Carletto Mai, Heinrich Meng, Albert Rudolf, Beat Rüedi, Conrad Torriani, Richard Torriani. (3 2 0 1 6-4).
Despite there was already an artificial ice rink in Katowice, this rink in Krynica was the scene for a World Championship tournament this year! The Canadians continued their golden triumph, this time with the Manitoba University Graduates! The star of the team, that had won the Allan Cup in 1928, was Blake Watson, who had done a very good job both as a player and as a coach in Europe. The USA returned to the Games, for the first time since Chamonix 1924 on the international level! The presentation was taken care by the AAU, but this later caused difficulties. The Americans showed their great imagination, by having a team called the Boston IC.
The Americans started their tournament by scoring steadily goals til 15-0. Then the officials run out of numbers on the electric board! So the Yankees were just playing for the rest of the game against the newcomers from Rumania. After the game the captain of the Rumanian team expressed his great thankfulness for the things learnt to the game records. In the pool B Alecsandru Botez scored the first Championship goals for his country. The Americans lost for the first time a game without scoring a goal. The opponent was obvious: their northern neighbours, winning 2-0.
But the Canadians experienced something new too; they lost one point to Sweden with a tie (0-0). But this achievement was of no use for the Swedes: an Austrian scored 1-0 against Sweden in this very even competion between the European countries. And by this goal the Austrians got their first World Championship merit, but this wasn’t their last one. The goalie Art Puttee made a legendary six games series by not allowing a single goal. His teammate Blake Watson later became a Hollywood gynecologist.
Canada: Art Puttee; Ward McVey, Guy Williamson, George Hill, Jack Pidcock, Gordon McKenzie, George Garbutt, Sammy McCallum, Dr. Blake Watson(8), Frank Morris. (6 5 1 0 24-0).
2. USA: Ted Frazier; Osborn Anderson, Edmond Dagnino, Robert Elliott, Hall, Francis Nelson, Charles Ramsey(10), Laurence Sanford, Dwight Shefler, Gordon Smith, Richard Thayer. (6 5 0 1 22-3).
3. Austria: Herman Weiss; Herbert Brück(4), Fritz Demmer, Jacques Dietrichstein, Anton Emhardt, Josef Göbel, Bruno Kahane, Karl Kirchberger, Ulrich Lederer, Walter Sell, Hans Tatzer, Ernst Trauttenberg. (8 4 0 4 14-16).
This tournament took place in the middle of the Great Depression! So, the only European teams entering the tournament were Germany and Poland, financing their trips mostly by themselves. Canada was being presented by the Winnipeg HC, having the first double-winner of the tournaments in the team: George Garbutt had already won the World Championship the previous year, though he was playing for Allan Cup in Canada at the time of the WC tournament... Some American players got their second silver medal, having played in the Boston IC for the USA in 1931. The conditions varied a lot: half of the games were played on the natural ice, the rink being in the middle of the speed-skating track. The other half was plaeyd in a brand new hockey arena, with the capacity of 3,000 spectators.
The tournament was played so, that each team played against each other twice, and there was a great lack of excitement. But Canada lost points for the second tournament in a row, when the USA played a tie (2-2) in the first round. Vic Lindqvist ensured the Canadian gold with his 2-1 goal in the second round though. In the game USA-Germany the audience resented the referees, sympathisizing the opponent overseas.
Rudi Ball became the best German player with his hat-trick against Poland. After the tournament the other European countries took the “Well, it was just Poland” –attitude. The German goalie Walter Leinweber told on his behalf: “We were the European Champion and the silver World Championship team in 1930 and a bronze-team in 1934. We won some European teams too, after being there.” He was the most bravest player of the tournament: he played his games with a broken nose, not having a substitute goalie.
Canada: William Cockburn, Stanley Wagner; Hugh Sutherland, Roy Henkel, Harold Simpson, Romeo Rivers, Victor Lindqvist, George Garbutt, Aliston Wise, Cliff Crowley, Ken Moore, Walter Monson(7), Bert Duncanson, Norm Malloy. (6 5 1 0 32-4).
2. USA: Franklin Farrell, Ted Frazier; John Garrison, Osborn Anderson, John Chase, Douglas Everett, Winthrop Palmer(7), John Bent, John Cookman, Joseph Fitzgerald, Gerald Hallock, Robert Livingston, Francis Nelson, Gordon Smith. (6 4 1 1 27-5).
3. Germany; Walter Leinweber; Alfred Heinrich, Erich Röhmer, Rudi Ball(3), Martin Schröttle, Gustav Jaenecke, Erich Herker, Werner Korff, Marquardt Slevogt, Georg Strobl. (6 2 0 4 7-26).
This was the tournament, that the impossible thing took place! The Canadians lost for the first time on the international level! But at this point, the winner was very easy to guess: The Massachuchetts Rangers won the Toronto Nationals. The winning goals was scored by a defenseman Ben Langmaid during the overtime. The manager of the team was working behind the other scenes as well: with the Boston Celtics on basket-ball and with the Boston Bruins on ice hockey. His name was Walter Brown. One factor in this historical Canadian loss is said to have been the beer of Prague.
The scene of the games was a brand new artificial ice-rink on the island of Stavnice, the first such thing in Czechoslovakia. The opening game was the first hockey game on the radio in the country as well. The rink has been originally intended for use already for the European Championship tournament in 1932. But there were some delays in the process. The Czech hosts got their first medal for 13 years on the international level. This meant the real beginning of the League in the country. The most valuable player of the team was Josef Malecek with his 10 goals.
Another star of this tournament was the little big man from Germany, Rudi Ball(163 cm), scoring 5 goals. After this World Championship he faced a hard time in his home-country because of one Austrian corporal. But lacking Rudi Ball the German team faced some hard times too, despite getting the bronze-medal the next year. His most important teammate Gustav Jaenecke refused to play without him.
USA: Gerry Cosby; John B.Garrison, Ben Langmaid; JamesBreckingridge, Sherman Forbes, Channing Hilliard, Frank Holland, Stewart Iglehart, Winthrop Palmer(9), Laurence Sanford. (5 5 0 0 23-1).
2. Canada; Ronny Geddes; John Hearn(3), Clare McIntyre(3); Cliff Chisholm, Frank Collins, Lynd Huggins, Kenny Kane(3), Gordie Kerr(3), Scotty McAlpine, Marty Nugent. (5 4 0 1 17-3).
3. Czechoslovakia: Jan Peka, Vorel; Alois Cetkovksky, Wolfgang Dorazil, Karel Hromadka, Oldrich Kucera, Josef Malecek(10), Jan Mattern, Jan Michalek, Zbynek Petrs, Jaroslav Pusbauer, Tomas Svihovec, Jiri Tozicka. (8 6 0 2 17-12).
Another major hockey tournament taking palce in Via Piranesi! And: again the US team had to be the second in the World Championship. The team Canada called the Saskatoon Quakers got a great honour on their European tour: the team was invited to the royal box in Norway. In addition to this, the Italian fascist government honoured the Quakers with a special price. The greatest attention the Quakers got, was by placing a wreath on the tomb of an unknown soldier.
The later best known player of the Quakers team, a later NHL-player Tom Dewar, didn’t play in any of the games. In the tournament this Allan Cup second best team showed special respect for the Germans by defeating them 6-0. Also Peter Bessone of the US showed the Germans a special respect by scoring two goals in the semi-final. He joined the team from France. The team included some players from the Alabama university too, but the main address remained the same: Harvard and Boston. The Germans got the Bronze by Römer and Lang scoring the 1-1 and 2-1 goals against Switzerland.
The ice palace of Milan still exists, and the ice too, but no longer hockey is being played there. Italy is a good metaphor for the extremity of the time: besides the ice hockey World Championship, the modest Mussolini government also took care of the soccer world championship and the first European Championship in track and field in Turin. All of these events happened the same year: 1934.
Canada: Conrad Wood; Harold Wilson, Ronald Silver, Tom Dewar, Elmer Piper; Albert Welsh(5), Ray Watkins, Bert Scharfe(5), Leslie Bird, James Dewey, Cliff Lake, Albert Rogers. (4 4 0 0 19-2).
2. USA: Clem Harnedy; Peter Bessone(2), Walter Bender, Fred McDonnel, Ed Keating, Bob Jeremiah, Dick Maley, Frank Stubbs(2), Bob Nilon(2). (4 3 0 1 6-2).
3. Germany: Walter Leinweber; Werner George(2), Gustav Jaenecke(2), Theodor Kaufmann, Roman Kessler, Werner Korff, Alois Kuhn, Hans Lang(2), Horst Orbanowski(2), Erich Röhmer, J.A.Von Bethmann-Hollweg. (7 4 0 3 11-14).
After the two World Championship tournaments the teams returned to the natural ice again! But the Davos ice stadium was really ideal for the tournament, since there were three rinks next to the speed-skating track! Again the USA was absent, but Canada continued the triumph of North-America. Though Switzerland showed the European standards had improved, they lost the final only 2-4. Though the Swiss line called the Ni-line had lost one man, because of flue, Torriani scored a brilliant goal. The Czechoslovakian team was a good opponent too; the player of the tournament, Albert Lemay scored one and his brother the second one, the total for the Maple Leaf team being only 2-1.
This time their national team was the Champion of Manitoba. And since this team there were no more national teams from Winnipeg. The most significant player of the team internationally was Victor Lindqvist. For some reason the Swedish managed to hire him as a coach to Sweden for the years 1936-1939. They certainly had a reason to do so, since the Swiss superb line Bibi Torriani – Hans Cattini – Pic Cattini scored four goals, the final scores being for Switzerland 6-1.
Great Britain was becoming an important European hockey nation as well; Bob Wyman scored the only goal against the French team, the final score being 1-0. In the long run this team brought the first GBR medal for 11 years, though. That was a bronze one. But you have to mention, that this team was just like the others; Great Britain had a lot of tricks and treats imported from Canada. Of the Baltic countries Latvia participated for the second time (the debut took place in 1933), but they didn’t start their tournament pretty well: a loss to Canada 0-14. Holland of the Benelux countries made a tolerable debut by losing to Hungary with pretty tolerable numbers: 0-6.
Canada: Art Rice-Jones; Roy Henkel, Cameron Shewan, Joseph Rivers, Romeo Rivers, Albert LeMay(11), Anthony LeMay, Art Craighton, Jack Yellowless, Victor Lindqvist. (7 7 0 0 44-7).
2. Switzerland: Albert Künzler; Christian Badrutt, Ferdinand Cattini(10), Hans Cattini, Otto Heller, Arnold Hirtz, Ernst Hug, Charles Kessler, Herbert Kessler, Paul Müller, Thomas Pleisch, Oscar Schmid, Richard Torriani. (8 5 2 1 24-8)
3. Great Britain; Scotty Milne; Carl Erhardt, Gordon Dailley(4), Bob Wyman, Gerry Davey, Ted Jakcson, Ernie Ramus, Ernie Leacock, Pete Halford, Gordon Johnson, Pete Stevenson. (7 4 0 3 14-14).
Combining these two communities into one town is the most ever-lasting thing ever done by mister Hitler according to some sources, though the name is mentioned in this form before these games! The tournament took place in pretty even conditions; on the lake Riessersee and on the pretty new artificial ice-rink. The Arian race had to face realities; the European NHL-level player called Rudi Ball had to be invited to the German national team. That didn’t improve the success of the “superior race”, though; Czechoslovakia and Sweden were getting the better European Championship medals. Another team from a fascist country made a miracle; Italy won the US by 1-0.
Then there was Great Britain. They reached their peak in this tournament, by using every kind of method as an old empire. There was even one real Great Britain player in this, the rest being from Canada. For some reason the top World Championship level countries urged Canada to protest. The games began and, however, the “Europeans” reached the gold medal for the first time. In the long run most of the players of this team returned to create a career in Canada. The master-mind behind this British swindle was later the president of the IIHF; Bunny Ahearne. His travel agency, Blue Ribbon, had a monopoly to bring the North-American teams to the tournaments.
The Finnish were planning their debut for this tournament. But finally Finland only sent two observers. You can say, though, that there was some kind of Finnish flavour on the ice: Ray Milton and Gustav Saxberg having Finnish roots in team Canada. You can call the hometown of the former Allan Cup finalists, Port Arthur Bearcats, the unofficial Finnish Canadian capitol too. But the Finns from Finland were coming in the long run.
Great Britain: James Foster, Art Child; Carl Erhardt, Gordon Dailley. Bob Wyman; James Borland, Archie Stimchcombe, Edgar Brenchley, John Coward, James Chappell, Alex Archer, Gerry Davey (6), John Kilpatrick. (6 4 2 90 17-3)
2. Canada: Francis Moore, Arthur Nash; Herman Murray, Walter Kitchen, Raymond Milton; David Neville, Kenneth Farmer, Hugh Farquharson(11), Maxwell Deacon, Alexander Sinclair, William Thomson, James Haggarty, Ralph Saint-Germain. (8 7 0 1 54-7).
3. USA: Thomas Moone, Malcolm McAlpin; Francis Shaughnessy, Philip LaBatte; Frank Stubbs, John Garrison(5), Paul Rowe, John Lax, Gordon Smith, Eldridge Ross, Francis Spain, August Kammer. (8 5 1 2 12-4).
Now it happened! For the very first time the two main venues were hockey arenas with a capacity of 11,000 spectators and both of them had a roof; Wembley and Harringay. So, the conditions were similar to the modern hockey arenas of the modern European top countries. The participating teams were accomodated to the Dorchester Hotel too. Norway made its debut in this tournament and Ole Brodal scored the first goal for the team.
The Canadian players (with Great Britain passports) were going fast forward. This was sealed in the semifinals with goals scored by Davey and Brenchley against Switzerland. Then came the real Canadians. The Kimberley Dynamiters was the first Allan Cup winner ever from their west-coast the previous year. They finally won the final, despite having hard times with the Swiss in the semifinals, winning only 2-1. The londoners showed an example of their civilized manners by throwing orange-peels to the ice. They might have been schocked by the number of “krauts” in a Canadian team. The main Canadian goaltender, Swede Hornqvist, had been injured in a car crash.
Gustav Jaenecke was missing from the bronze medal game, but he hardly wouldn’t have made anything by himself against the Swiss team. So, the superb line called “Ni” scored four goals against the Germans. The final score, 6-0, probably tells something about the level of the game. Finland was presented this time by the presence of the London ambassador. Sweden played obviously their weakest tournament of all-time. But the most nordic northern countries were present somehow. The Soviet Union was only making friends with this game at this time.
Canada: Ken Campbell, Eric Hornqvist; Thomas Almack, Frederick Botterill, William Burnett, Jack Forsay, George Goble, James Kemp, Douglas Kiever, Paul Kozak, Ralph Redding(12), Harry Robertson, Gordon Wilson, Hugo Mackie, Art Mackie. (9 9 0 0 60-4).
2. Great Britain: Jimmy Foster, Scotty Milne; Jimmy Anderson, Alex Archer, Edgar Brenchley(10), James Chappell, John Coward, Gordon Dailley, John Davey, Carl Erhardt, Goldie, Jimmy Kelly, Paul MCPhail, Norm McQuade, N.McJohnKilpatrick, Archibald Stinchcombe, Bob Wyman. (9 8 0 1 50-3)
3. Switzerland: Albert Künzler; Christian Badrutt, Ferdinand Cattini(8), Hans Cattini, Albert Geromini, Arnold Hirtz, Max Keller, Charles Kessler, Herbert Kessler, Heini Lohrer, Beat Rüedi, Richard Torriani(8). (8 4 1 3 27-12).
The gorgeous artificial ice-rink in Czechoslovakia got again a World Championship tournament! Later this year, the country was divided into two pieces, thanks to one Hitler. But on the eve of the Second World War irony took its place; Czechoslovakia won the bronze medal, their opponent was, indeed, Germany. The irony was present in another way too with Germany; this was the last tournament for the jewish-originating star Rudi Ball for the team. Czchoslovakia made another kind of national history; the greatest national club, the LTC Prague, brought the first slovak, Ladislav Trojak, to an international medal-winning team. This was his third international tournament.
Canada was represented by the Sudbury Wolves and for the first time in the tournament history the men wearing a maple leaf jersey weren’t divine. In the qualification round Canada hardly won Sweden 3-2. The US team made its lowest rank, losing the semi-final series with 0 goals to 3. They remained into places 6-7 and the team had never before returned from an IIHF international tournament without a medal. Hungary, being a promising European country of the time, gained a tie against the Canadians by 1-1 in the semi-final series.
Hungary had proved its level already earlier, being the European bronze-team in the 1934 WC. A man called Ladislaus Rona was later the first foreign player in the Finnish series, representing the Kiffen league-level club in the beginning of the 1940’s. The reason wasn’t purely for the sports reasons; he had disagreements with his government. Great Britain, with its Canadians, took the silver medal once again. The next year they gave up in the middle of the semi-final series, obviously for the impossible chances to reach the medal games. Anyway, this year Gerry Davey scored a goal in the final against Canada, but before that Reg Chipman had already scored two goals and Pat McReavy scored the third one. Gordie Bruce scored three goals in this tournament and reached the NHL later.
Canada: John Coulter, Mel Allbright; Johnny Godfrey, Buster Portland, Archie Burn; Pearcy Allen(5), Gordie Bruce, Reg Chipman, Roy Heximer, Jack Marshall, Pat McReavy, Jimmy Russell, Glen Sutherland. (7 6 1 0 17-6).
2. Great Britain: James Foster, Reg Merrifield; Alexander Archer, James Chappell, Gordon Dailley, Gerry Davey(9), Pete Halford, Jimmy Kelly, Archibald Stinchcombe, Pete Woozley, Bob Wyman. (8 6 1 1 27-8).
3. Czechoslovakia: Bohumil Modry; Alois Cetkovsky, Jarda Cisar, Antonin Houba, Oldrich Hurych, Drahos Jirotka, Zdenek Jirotka, Oldrich Kucera, Josef Malecek, Jan Michalek, Frantisek Pacalt, Frantisek Pergl, Jaroslav Pusbauer, Ladislav Trojak(3). (7 4 1 2 9-6).
History was made in this tournament again! On the magnificient articifial ice rinks of Dolder in Zürich and Margarethenpark (with a capacity of 16,000) in Basle Finland finally made its debut. You can say, that it was an architype debut, except; The US team was leading after two periods only 1-0 and the Americans had a reason to be thankful for their goalie Ed Maki (a man with Finnish roots!) Then the Yankees went on with their routine, winning 4-0. But it has been said, that a sensation was missing only a few shots, that hit the bars of the “cage”. When the Finns were playing for the places 9-14, they noticed a meaning of a word of a gentleman; an agreement for the substitutes playin was made with the Italians and the Dutchmen. But the games were played by their stars.
The Allan Cup winner called the Trail Smoke Eaters came to win again the title for Canada, being the first team to wear a pure club jersey. They became the most appreciated World Champion team between the World Wars time. For example, the model for Anatoli Tarasov was exactly this team. A very good friend with the team was Mike Buckna, the coach of Czechoslovakia since 1936. He was a Canadian with Slovakian roots and he happened to have been born in Trail. The only goal against the Canadians wasin a game against Czechoslovakia. The final score was 2-1, after a defenseman Tom Johnston scored into his own net!
Sweden didn’t participate this time. The Swedish hockey in general had its haydays gone; the artificial rink, made into a shelter of aeroplanes, was moved away to the Stockholm Stadium in 1938. The prime game being bandy there. So it seemed at the time, that Sweden was fading away from the international hockey. But then... after this tournament a real big and more serious tournament took place and the international hockey touring was only some random games now and then.
Canada: Duke Scodellaro, Buck Buchanan; Mickey Brennan, Joe Benoit, Ab Cronie, Bunny Dame(9), Jimmy Haight, Benny Hayes, Tom Johnston, Dick Kowcinak, Johnny McCreedy, Jimmy Morris, Mel Snowdon. (8 8 0 0 42-1).
2. USA: Ed Maki; Ralph Dondi, Leonard Saari, Spencer Wagnild, Thomas Leaky, Ed Nickolson, Al Van, Pud Quirk(9), Dick Maley, Art Bogue. (9 7 0 2 25-8).
3. Switzerland: Hugo Müller, Albert Künzler: Christian Badrutt, Ferdinand Cattini(12), Hans Cattini, Reto Delnon, Dürst, A.Geromini, Franz Geromini, Charles Kessler, Herbert Kessler, Heini Lohrer, Beat Rüedi, Richard Torriani, Trauffer. (10 7 1 2 51-13).
14. Finland: Lars Blom, Teuvo Castren; Erik Hedman, Seppo Jaakkola, Henry Lindahl, Kalevi Sutinen; Holger Granström(3), Klaus Hagström, Kalevi Ihalainen, Pentti Lappalainen, Olof Nyholm, Erkki Rintala, Ronald Sarnasto, Edmund Sjöberg, Risto Tiitola (5 0 0 5 5-25).
Goalie: Art Puttee (Canada 1931)
Defenceman: Sam McCallum, Ward McVey (Canada 1931)
Forward: Richard Torriani (Switzerland 1930-39).
Great Britain 1-2-1
This decade was naturally the time of recovering from the war. The new regieme made its effect already, for example, in the Prague World Championship. So improving conditions and getting more participants had to be the thing for the future. Finland came to this level for the second time and you can see this as a kind of a new era in Finnish hockey: The players of the national teams of the country were practically from one province til the mid-1960’s: Häme. You can see Hämeenlinna as the Finnish Boston and Tampere as the Finnish Montreal and there was only one player regularly til the next decade: Unto Viitala, the goalie.
The aftermath of the war was still going on, when this tournament took place! For the first time the United States was the only north-American country to participate into an international tournament. CAHA of Canada had its difficulties with the IIHF. The two federations had their disputes in the United States, so the team in Prague was a compromise.
In the tournament itself the Czehcoslovakians already thought themselves to remain a silver-medal team in their own tournament, after Ericsson had scored against them twice and guaranteed the win. The Swedes already considered themselves as the World Champions too. Then a certain man named Wurm showed his swift skills in the goal, and both Wurmbrandt and Winger scored 2-1 for a win over Sweden. So the Swedes ended up being “only” the silver medal team. Maybe the Austrians were feeling uneasy, losing their European Championship medal, despite becoming a World Championship bronze-medal team; the young Swiss team did win the European teams, but the Austrians won the USA. For obvious reasons the Czech audience suddenly found their way to the stands in the middle of the Sweden-Austria game. For an obvious gratitude the Czechs sent a trainful of coal and candies to Austria, being ruled by the allies at the time. In the train-station the Austrian team was sent home by thounsands of people. The red-and-white team never reached the World Championship medals again.
The most peculiar thing happened to the Belgium team. For some incidents their goalies ended up staying in their home-country. When they had no substitute, they recruited a fan in the town. He was convinced, that the shots on goal were not dangerous. Jahn Milo played only one international game, that ended pretty dangerously. The Swedes won 24-1. This was the last appearance on the level A of Belgium.
Czechoslovakia: Bohumil Modry, Zdenek Jarkovsky; Frantisek Pcalt, Miroslav Slama, Jousef Trousilek, Miroslav Pokorny, Vilbald Stovik, Ladislav Trojak, Vladimir Zabrodsky(29), Stanislav Konopasek, Vaclav Rozinak, Josef Kus, Vladimir Bouzek, Karel Stibor, Jaroslav Drobny). (7 6 0 1 85-10).
2. Sweden: Arne Johansson, Charles Larsson; Åke Andersson, Sigvard Boström, Rolf Ericsson, Hans Hjelm, Erik Johansson, Rune Johansson, Gunnar Landelius, Lars Ljungman(20), Birger Nilsson, Holger Nurmela, Åke Olsson, Bror Pettersson, Rolf Pettersson. (7 6 0 1 55-15).
3. Austria: Josef Wurm, Alfred Huber; Franz Csöngey, Fritz Demmer(14), Reinhold Egger, Egon Engel, Walter Feistritzer, Adolf Hafner, Oskar Nowak, Hans Schneider, Willibald Stanek, Friedrich Walter, Helfried Winger, Rudolf Wurmbrandt, Hans Zehetmayer. (7 5 0 2 49-32).
The Winter Olympics started to survive! Though the arrangements were made by the Ebenezer Scrooge handbook: the cost and the games officials were being kept on the 1928 Winter Olympics level. Despite the variation of sport events and participants had grown. So, the sportsmen did much of the task of the officials by themselves. One thing was properly taken care off, though; the Ice Stadium had gone through a splendid renovation. Maybe they wanted a nice scene for the medal ceremonies.
Again the north-American teams were the most colourful ones, both inside and outside the rink. First Canada didn’t intend to send a team, but one officer from the head-quarters of the RCAF formed the team first, and asked for a permission second. The team got its “blessing” afterwards from his superiors and opened its exhibition tour utmost badly. For some reason the Ottawans had a “What a hell are you doing there?” –feeling about them. But the team was lucky by being unlucky; Dick Ball got a lung infection and they were utmost lucky by getting the best amateur goalie of Canada, Murray Dowey. The federations dispute of the US reached its peak; the USOC sent their own team, and the AHA their own too. Finally one team was in the opening ceremonies, the other one played the tournament. While the AHA team’s player were accused for being professional, their number of amateur players was infact greater than in the one of the USOC.
The Grand Old Man of the Swiss team was Bibi Torriani. He swore the olympic oath and did perform in his national team already 20 years earlier. He scored his last international tournament goals here too. The Swiss audience showed their fair play –spirit in the game against the Canadians by throwing everything with snow-balls. The Canadian team’s response was militarily blunt; they won 3-0 and got their gold-medal with a better for-and-against-goals compared to the Czechs.
Canada: Murray Dowey, Hubert Brooks (Dick Ball); Frank Dunster, Roy Forbes, Andy Gilpin, Ross King, Andre Laperriere, Louis Lecompte, Pete Leichnitz, Orval Gravelle, Patrick Guzzo, Wally Halder(21), Ted Hibberd, George Mara, Ab Renaud, Reg Schroeter. (8 7 1 0 69-5)
2. Czechoslovakia: Bohumil Modry, Zsdenek Jarkovsky; Vladimir Bouxzek, Jaroslav Drobny, Premysl Hajny, Stanislav Konopasek, Miroslav Pokorny, Vaclav Rozinak, Miroslav Slama, Karel Stibor, Vilem Stovik, Ladislav Trojak, Josef Trousilek, Vladimir Zabrodsky(21). (8 7 1 0 80-18)
3. Switzerland: Hans Bänninger, Reto Perl; Alfred Bieler, Heinrich Boller, Ferdinand Cattini, Hans Cattini, Hans Dürst, Walter Dürst, Emil Handschin, Heini Lohrer, Werner Lohrer, Gebhard Poltera, Ulrich Poltera(12), Beat Rüedi, Otto Schubiger, Richard Torriani, Hans-Martin Trepp. (8 6 0 2 67-21).
So, Sweden finally brought the World Championship for the first time into a Northern European country! There was a rush of audience to the stands, that required an arrival of the ambulances. The reason being the jamming of the revolving gates, letting people to watch the Canada-Sweden game. The Danish were jammed in their World Championship debut: The Sudbury Wolves from Canada made them humble with the result being 47-0. Partial reason to these numbers was the Canadian anger, after being suspected for black market trade within the exhibition games. The greater reason was the inefficient equipment of the Danish team. They lost the rest of the games so badly, that they gave up the last game against Finland. Anyway, Jörgen Hviid had made one of their positive things, scoring the first Danish World Championship goal for the first time.
After the qualification round Czechoslovakia became the first EuropeanWorld Champion with a fair play in the final series. The best guarantee being a win over Canada with the result 3-2. Sweden played a tie 2-2 and the Swiss team played also a tie with the Maple Leaf team, the final result being 1-1. Austria with its veteran players began to fade away, like the five goals scored by an American called Bruce Mather showed to the audience. USA faded away against Canada that much, that their northern neighbour finally reached the silver medal.
Team Finland’s return was miserable thinking about the results: they lost 1-12 against Sweden and 2-19 against Czechoslovakia in the qualification games. On the other hand, Finland won for the first times: 7-3 against Norway and 17-2 against Belgium. But the Czechs lost 0-2 for the Americans. Though the made it to the Championship. Then the local communists sent the World Champions to the salt-mines. Except a certain Vladimir Zabrodsky...
Czechoslovakia: Bohumil Modry, Josef Jirka; Vladimir Bouzek, Augustin Bubnik, Miloslav Charouzd, Premusl Hajny, Vladimir Kobranov, Stanislav Konopasek(12), Jiri Macelis, Zdenek Marek, Frantisek Mizera, Oldrich Nemec, Cenek Picha, Vaclav Rozinak, Josef Trousilek, Frantisek Vacovsky, Vladimir Zabrodsky. (7 6 0 1 46-14).
2. Canada: Robert Mills, Al Picard; Jimmy Russell, Tom Russell, Don Stanley, Joe DiBastiani, Don Munro(10), Ray Bauer, Bud Hashey, Joe Tergeson, Emile Gagne, Barney Hillson, Bill Dimoch. (7 4 2 1 74-10)
3. USA: Dick Bittner, Pat Finnegan; Art Crouse, Dan Crowley, Charlie Holt, Milt Johnson, Russ Johnson, Gerry Kilmartin, Bruce Mather(19), Jack Riley, Bill Thayer, Norman Walker, Al Van, Al Yurkewicz. (8 5 0 3 59-22).
7. Finland: Unto Viitala, Juhani Linkosuo; Matti Rintakoski, Toivo Hellen, Ossi Kauppi, Esko Tie, Paul Väinjärvi; Aarne Honkavaara(6), Keijo Kuusela, Loft Nasib, Kalle Havulinna, Matti Karumaa, Rauni Laine, Eero Salisma, Nils Nummelin, Tuomo Pohjavirta. (4 3 02 32-36 (When Denmark gave up their game against Finland, Finland was considered as a winner by figures 5-0)).
Goalie: Bohumil Modry (Czechoslovakia 1947-49)
Defenceman: André Laperriere (Canada 1948)
Forward: Vladimir Zabrodsky (Czechoslovakia 1947-49).
This was the decade, when politics really took its place in sports. You could say, that even going to a toilet without a permission was a provocation from the west or the communists. Despite making its sensation the Sovjet Union (or USSR) was still just an apprentice on the international level. But in the long run the Northest American country had to give up its national club team tradition and really start to think about a real national team. Finland took its real steps on the international level. The province of Häme was again a forerunner of conditions by making the first national artificial ice-rink. The national team was still firmly in the hands of Häme people as well.
This was the thing in sports in London: the Empress Hall, after being, for example, a wrestling arena in the summer olympics of 1948, was now honoured as being another one of the hockey arenas of this tournament. The main thing of this hall was music. The Czechoslovakian team was honoured by being taken to the salt-mines. But still, there was Jaroslav Drobny, who managed to get himself from a socialist realism into a capitalist utopia. By not returning from a tennis tournament in Gstaad. Later he returned as an Egyptian to play in Wimbledon. So the Western Canadian champion had an easy task to take the World Champion title back. And like in the good old days, they won Belgium in the qulification round with the 1920’s like figures: 33-0. The level of this team can be seen from its whole goals-for-and-against: 88-5. And yet this Edmonton Mercurys became overshadowed totally by a bit more mediocre Mercs team two years later...
Sweden collapsed totally by winning only Norway in the final series. At the time Norway was a promising country on the pool A-level. Great Britain made history too, by assembling the first team ever with no Canadians. But some people might say, that Canada was still officially a part of Great-Britain... Again the British audience showed its British civilized manner: when Forbes was penalized for hurting a Swede called Axberg, the stuff was thrown on the ice by nine-thousand people.
And Finland then: like the song goes: “... brother, can you spare a dime?...” At this time the Finnish Ice Hockey Federation was one of the poorest ones in sports in the country. Still, a player called Honkavaara visited Canada at this time. A visit, that payed its dues in many ways to the Finnish hockey, more than anything for a while...
Canada: Jack Manson, Wilburn Delaney; Harry Allen, Marsh Darling, John Davies, Robert Davis, Robert Dawe, Don Gauf, Doug Kilburn, Leo Lucchini(11+9), Doug McAuley, Ab Newsome, Al Purvis, Don Stanley, Pete Wright, Nassic Young. (7 7 0 0 88-5)
2. USA: Dick Desmond, Bernie Burke; Al Van, Bob Frick, Bob Graizinger, Jim Pleban, John Gallagher, Bun Trombley(12+3), John McIntyre, Buzz Johnson, Prince Johnson, Bruce Gardiner, Robert Rompre, Sam Pohling, Byrne. (7 5 0 2 49-29).
3. Switzerland: Häns Bänninger, Martin Riesen; Alfred Bieler, Heinrich Boller, Othmar Delnon, Reto Delnon, Walter Dürst, Emile Golaz, Emil Handschin, Werner Härter, Hans Heierling, Wilhelm Pfister, Gebhard Poltera, Ulrich Poltera(17+4), Martin Riesen, Silvio Rossi, Alfred Streun, Hans-Martin Trepp. (7 4 0 3 57-46).
And the banks of Seine was visited by a Finnish national hockey team! Maybe the interest for the continental ladies played its part. After playing on the natural ice the team had to get used to the smoky air of the arena indoors. The audience being allowed to smoke freely inside. The Arena had a capacity of 14,000, with the conditions being very much like a notoriously poor Pori hockey arena of the 1970’s, later in Finland. The name of the Paris arena was naturally Palais des Sports. In the tournament you could see the notorious forthcoming Finnish hockey traumas: a Swede called Bengt Larsson scored a hat-trick against the team on the Swedish jubilee to the silver podium. The rest of the team took care of the rest: 11-3. Against Great Britain Finland was leading 3-2 after two periods. Then came a penalty shot for the British(?) and then they won the game 6-3. So, Finland lost its first possible European Hockey medals. Maybe the team found some comfort by winning the World Championship fourth (and third best European) team, Norway, by 3-0.
Canada brought in again a Western Canadian Champion, this time named Lethbridge Maple Leafs. The team was a typical a bit over average North-American national club team. But USA made its worst flop so far with its national club team. Called the Bates Hockey Club. After losing with a lot of goals by Sweden and even being beaten by Finland in their exhibiton game series this team hardly became sixth in the tournament. But after this the Americans have obviously always assembled a team for the international tournaments. This was faced a bit later by their northern neighbours.
In this tournament you can say, that the Championship became a bit more sportsmanship-like, because there were pools A and B right from the start. There were big losses on the pool B too, though: France won Belgium 10-0. For Switzerland this was a last fair-play medal-winning tournament. After this tournament the best goal-scorer, Uli Poltera, played splendidly with his linemate, Hans-Martin Trepp, but generally speaking the Swiss team started to float to pool B-level.
Canada: Carl Sorokoski, Mallie Hughes; Norman Gray, Jim Malacko, Don Vogan, Tom Wood, Whitey Rimstad(pelaajavalmentaja), Stan Obodiac(12), Mike Roth, Bill Chandler, Bill Flick, Benny Flanagan, Hector Negrello, Bill Gibson, Jackie McLean, Andrew Milroy, Bert Knibbs, Lou Siray. (6 6 0 0 62-6)
2. Sweden; Lars Svensson, Arne Johansson; Åke Andersson, Hans Andersson, Stig Andersson, Stig Karlsson, Rolf Ericsson, Erik Johansson, Gösta Johansson(8), Rune Johansson, Yngve Karlsson, Bengt Larsson, Åke Lassas, Börje Löfgren, Lars Pettersson, Sven Thunman. (6 4 1 1 33-14)
3. Switzerland: Hans Bänninger, Jean Ayers; Emil Handschin, Hans Heierling, Otto Schläpfer, Emile Golaz, Walter Dürst, Hans-Martin Trepp, Gebhard Poltera, Ulrich Poltera(8), Freddy Bieler, Wilhelm Pfister, Reto Delnon, Gian Bazzi, Güggenbühl. (6 4 1 1 28-12)
7. Finland: Matti Naapuri, Unto Viitala; Esko Tie, Eero Saari, Matti Rintakoski, Jukka Wuolio, Ossi Kauppi, Pentti Isotalo; Matti Karumaa(3), Aarne Honkavaara, Keijo Kuusela, Christian Rapp, Kalle Havulinna, Lofti Nasib, Pentti Isotalo, Teuvo Takala, Kauko Mäkinen, Yrjö Hakala. (6 1 0 5 15-37).
After two tournaments taking place in an arena with a roof there was a return to an artificial rink – or you could rather call the Jordal Amfi a brilliant-looking open-door arena! Some games were played on natural ice as well. After two attempts Finland finally appeared to the Olympic hockey scene. Many have told the team Canada was nominated because of the merits of the WC 1950 and most of all because of the manager’s eager promotion work. But maybe a fairly good success in the 1951 Allan Cup had its own role. So the Edmonton Mercurys became the Team Canada to win the Olympic Gold, thus being the last amateur club team to make such an achievement. By coincidence the manager of the team owned a car-dealer-shop in Edmonton. Their main article being the Ford Mercury.
The US team scared off the other teams to win a silver medal. To show the exact figures: the three most penalized players of the team got more penalties than all the other teams together. Though one has to remember, that without the help of their neighbours (with a tie 3-3) the Americans would have ended up fourth. Sweden became the bronze-medal team, winning a game played for the medal after the series. Czechoslovakia, returning to the scene in this tournament, naturally called the new game a political provocation. And so did the Polish players, when the American players with a Polish backround were trying to make jokes to them. There was a super-star called Hjallis in the scene; but he was Hjalmar Andersen, a Norwegian speed-skater. Thus giving a baby-aged Finnish boy (later to become a Finnish national hockey manager) a nick-name.
The Finnish team prepared for the tournament on a really short notice, because of the shortage of natural ice in the country. Considering this, the seventh place wasn’t a bad achievement. Especially, when thinking, that there was only one country on the level A to play only on natural ice back home. The Swiss superstars Uli Poltera and Hans-Martin Trepp scored 11 goals per player. But the rest of the team had lost its touch totally. Markus Egen of Western Germany scored 9 goals, all three being in the top ten. Team Finland having none in the group. Maybe “the lions” were a more even team... Despite, losing to the Swiss 0-12 on this stage.
Canada: Eric Patterson, Ralph Hansch; William Dawe, John Davies, Allan Purvis, Don Gauf, Robert Meyers; Bill Gibson(15), Davis Miller, Robert Dickson, George Abel, Frank Sullivan, Gordon Robertson, Louis Secco, Robert Watt, Tom Pollock. (8 7 1 0 71-14)
2. USA: Dick Desmond, Don Whiston; Robert Rompre, Joe Czarnota, Al Van, Gerry, Kilmartin; Arnold Oss(7), Ken Yackel, Cliff Harrison, John Mulhearn, Andre Gambucci, Ruben Bjorkman, Len Ceglarski, Jim Sedin, John Noah. (8 6 1 1 43-21)
3. Sweden: Lars Svensson, Thord Flodqvist; Rune Johansson, Åke Andersson, Göte Almqvist, Lasse Björn, Sven Thunman; Göte Blomqvist(9), Sven Johansson, Gösta Johansson, Lars Pettersson, Hans Öberg, Stig Tvilling, Hans Tvilling, Erik Johansson, Holger Nurmela. (8 6 0 2 48-19).
7. Finland: Unto Wiitala, Pekka Myllylä; Jukka Wuolio, Eero Saari, Ossi Kauppi, Pentti Isotalo, Christian Rapp(5), Keijo Kuusela, Lauri Silvan, Aarne Honkavaara, Eero Salisma, Matti Karumaa, Yrjö Hakala, Erkki Hytönen, Kauko Mäkinen, Esko Rekomaa, Matti Rintakoski. (8 2 0 6 21-60).
This tournament took place both in the full-roof arena and on artificial ice!!! Sweden got its first WC title in an early Swedish way; of the four best of the previous year the only team attending was Sweden. USA had some arguments with the Swiss Federation, but the main reason for withdrawal were the cost of travel. And the Swiss unwelcomed the American teams outside the World Championship tournaments. To support the Americans the Canadians withdrew too. In addition to all this, the president of CAHA, leading the Canadian amateurs, stated: “We spend 10 000 dollars every year to send a team in Europe to play 40 games to packed arenas. Only to enrich European hockey coffers, in return all we get is constant and unnecessary abuse over our style of play.” One must add, that the Sovjet debut was postponed for a year, because of their player called Bobrov had got injured.
The Czechs did attend to the tournament. But then fate took its place; their president Gottwald died. So a return home was taking place. By coincidence the team had lost to Sweden. But the Swedes played to some extent like their Finnish neighbours; a German called Poitsch scored four goals against Sweden. Though that was the Swedish way, that they finally won 8-6. The last starry moment for the last so-far medal-winning Swiss team - in the double-series of the pool A teams - was the crucial goal scored by Hans-Martin Trepp. So even the superstars of Switzerland were on their way to history.
Finland was going forward as usual: their World Championship debut was delayed for three years. The Olympic one for 12 years. And now for something obvious: a debut as a medal-winning team probably was delayed for thirtyfive years. One could claim, that some future-Finnish managers should have been born some years earlier...
Sweden: Thord Flodqvist, Hans Isaksson; Åke Andersson, Hans Öberg, Rune Johansson, Sven Thunman, Göte Almqvist, Lasse Björn; Sigurd Bröms, Göte Blomqvist, Gösta Johansson, Erik Johansson, Sven Johansson(8+2), Hans Andersson, Stig Andersson, Stig Carlsson, Rune Pettersson. (4 4 0 0 38-11)
2. Western-Germany: Alfred Hoffmann, Ulrich Jansen; Martin Beck, Anton Biersack, Karl Bierschel, Bruno Gutowski, Kurt Sepp, Xavier Unsinn, Georg Guggemos, Otto Brandenburg, Markus Egen, Walter Kremerschof, Fritz Poitsch(5+2), Dieter Niess, Karl Enzler, Hans Rampf. (4 1 0 3 17-26)
3. Switzerland: Hans Bänninger, Martin Riesen; Miggi Handschin, Rudolf Keller, Silvio Rossi, Armin Schütz, Otto Schläpfer, Walter Dürst, Hans-Martin Trepp, Gebi Poltera, Uli Poltera, Gian Bazzi, Michael Wehrli, Francis Blank, Otto Schubiger(1+3), Mudry. (4 1 0 3 9-27).
So the artificial ice rink in the Olympic Stadium of Stockholm was visited by those funny men in their leather-made-tank-helmets! And they were lucky beginners to win a B-class amateur team from Canada, as one can see from the best scorers of the tournament (1. Maurice Galand, 2. Eric Unger, 3. John Petro, all Canadians). There was a simple reason for the Lyndhurst Motors to represent Canada; they were the only team being interested enough about the WC. The eastern big power had made friends with this sport little by little between 1932-1939 and the first sovjet league season was meant to be started in 1941-42, but then came the real major league global events... So one can really consider the league starting in 1946-47 as the true beginning of their hockey. When the first modern style hockey-helmets made of plastic started to appear by the end of this decade, they were like by those funny men...
The USA was obviously still angry about the coincidende of the previous year, being absent this time. The Swedes showed at home with their bronze-medal, that the title of the previous year wasn’t a coincidence. Finland started to show the first signs of its potential, by losing only 3-5 against Sweden. But one cannot notice, that the sensational new World Champions lost their only point to a Swedish style; Sweden played a tie 1-1 in a blizzard. One sovjet led a way to a future Finnish super-star; Shuvalov was causing a lot of minor penalties to his opponents by grinning a lot, especially for the Canadians.
So, Finland was making steps forward against Sweden. But otherwise the Finns were just like earlier, being sixth even behind Western Germany. Though, the superstar of the time was absent from the ice. Afterwards he became utmost important off the ice, though. In an exhibition game against Poland 1953 Aarne Honkavaara had fatally injured his ankle...
USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Grigori Mkrtyrjan; Alfred Kutshevsky, Gendrikh Sidorenkov, Dmitri Ukolov, Aleksander Vinogradov, Pavel Zhiburtovich; Jevgeni Babitsh, Vselodov Bobrov(8+1), Mihail Bytskov, Aleksei Guryshev, Nikolai Hlystov, Aleksander Komarov, Juri Krilov, Valentin Kuzin, Viktor Shuvalov. (7 6 1 0 37-10)
2. Canada: Don Lockhart, Gavin Lindsay; Tom Campbell, Doug Chapman, Hal Fiskari, Tom Jamieson, Russ Robertson; Earl Clements, Maurice Galand(16+4), Norman Grey, Bob Kennedy, John Petro, George Sayliss, John Scott, Bill Shill, Vic Sluce, Eric Unger. (7 6 0 1 59-12).
3. Sweden: Thord Flodqvist, Hans Isaksson; Göte Almqvist, Lasse Björn, Åke Lassas, Sven Thunman; Åke Andersson, Göte Blomqvist, Stig Karlsson, Erik Johansson, Gösta Johansson, Sven Johansson(7+2), Holger Nurmela, Hans Öberg, Rolf Pettersson, Hans Tvilling, Stig Tvilling. (7 5 1 1 30-18).
6. Finland: Esko Niemi, Unto Viitala; Ossi Kauppi, Panu Ignatius, Olli Knuutinen, Matti Lampainen, Matti Rintakoski; Esko Rekomaa(4), Teuvo Takala, Christian Rapp, Rainer Lindström, Lauri Silvan, Yrjö Hakala, Aarno Hiekkaranta, Erkki Hytönen, Teppo Rastio, Reino Rautanen. ( 7 1 1 5 12-52).
In such many towns there were only two full-covered arenas! Outside the Cologne arena and The Niederrhein of Krefeld the teams were playing on obivously really old-fashioned ice rinks! The lucky Sovjets had made the Good Old Canucks angry with their WC title the previous year; the manager of the Toronto Maple Leafs called Conn Smythe had even offered his team to play against the USSR. There is no doubt about his capability to lead a team of this kind, being a manager of the 1928 Olympic gold medal team. They had outscored their opponents by 38-0 in three games in the final series. So, this became the first time afte the Second World War, that Canada sent an amateur team, that had won the Allan Cup. By coincidence ten out of fifteen Penticton Vees were ex-pros. The team had its own sponsor, the local dairy, that sent a milk can to the team par avion on a daily basis...
And this team showed the lines of Canadian international hockey for quite some time: a portion of goon-like physical hockey and real skillfull hockey side-by-side. In a game, that felt like the Third World War, Canada finally won 5-0. Some have even commented, that they could have won 10-0. In the Canadian parliament a break was held, when the final result was clear. For very clear reasons the 12,000 inhabitants of Penticton, B.C., started a carnival. The Sovjets took their loss relatively calmly; Yevgeni Babitsch threw his skates out of a hotel window.
The Finnish played their worst-ever tournament in pool A, being finally the ninth team. Maybe the first-ever win over a has-been country called Switzerland didn’t bring much constellation. And again Finland got its will-be top manager by injury; The playing career of Seppo Liitsola ended up, when his thigh-bone was broken.
Canada: Ivan McLelland, Don Moog; Hal Tarala, George McAvoy, Kevin Conway, George Taggarth; Bill Warwick(13), George McIntyre, Doug Kilburn, Grant Warwick, Jack McDonald, Jim Fairburn, Mike Shebaga, Don Berry, Bernie Bathgate, Jack Middleton. (8 8 0 0 66-6).
2. USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Grigori Mktyrjan; Dimitri Ukolov, Iva Tregubov, Alfred Kutshevski, Nikolai Sologubov, Pavel Zibutovitsh; Aleksei Guryshev(7), Viktor Shuvalov, Valentin Kuzin, Juri Krilov, Aleksander Uvarov, Nikolai Hlystov, Jevgeni Babitsh, Mihail Bytshkov, Vselodov Bobrov, Aleksander Komarov. (8 7 0 1 39-14)
3. Czechoslovakia: Jiri Ganzl, Jan Endek; Karel Gut, Stanislav Basilek, Jan Lidral, Jan Kasper, Vaclav Bubnik; Vlastimil Bubnik(17), Vladimir Zabrodsky, Slavomir Barton, Vaclav Pentucek, Oldrich Sedlak, Vlastimil Hajsman, Bronislav Danda, Miroslav Reiman, Jiri Sekyra, Mihail Vidlak. (8 5 1 2 63-22).
9. Finland: Esko Niemi, Unto Wiitala; Panu Ignatius, Teppo Rastio, Matti Lampainen, Matti Rintakoski, Esko Tie; Yrjö Hakala(5), Esko Rekomaa, Aarno Hiekkaranta, Erkki Hytönen, Rainer Lindström, Teuvo Takala, Seppo Liitsola, Lenni Lainesalo, Christian Rapp, Matti Sundelin. (8 1 0 7 16-72).
The pictoresque little winter sports town had been lucky enough to avoid any bombing during the war. The most significant re-building being the change of the Maion Stadion into a gorgeous open-door arena. The only very bad disaster had become with the new technology: the television. Thus the number of spectators buying tickets became a lot smaller than expected. Naturally the high prices played their role too.
The lucky beginners of this Olympic tournament were again the Sovjets, winning Canada 2-0. The Allan Cup triumph of the Kitchener-Waterloo Flying Dutchmen wasn’t being followed even by a silver-medal. The defenceman of their southern neighbour called John Mayasich scored a hat-trick, thus the US winning 4-1. So, the home-country of modern ice hockey faced the bronze-podium for the very first time. One thing with them, though, was the inexperience of playing in an out-door arena, since even the top amateur teams had been playing in full-roof arenas since the 1930’s. In the qualification round the team was shining more than the sun, though. Winning a good-ole’ top European hockey country, Austria, relatively easy: 23-0. But the next generation of this bronze-team was to make it better; the son of the goalie Denis Brodeur – called Martin – took back the Canadian Olympic glory a bit later...
The Swedish had built their great out-door arena, Johanneshov, but here they failed all the expectations. The Sovjets had built their own “arena” too; the local enthusiasts had built a small piece of artificial ice to a local children’s park in Moscow. The size of it was 12 x 12 meters, being covered with a military tent in summer, thus the ice didn’t melt. After this tournament the times they were a-changing... Finland had still its yes-or-no season going on with the Olympic participation. But there was a kind of Finnish playing a role in the tournament, the US-Finnish-root-goalie Willard Ikola being rewarded as the best goalie of the tournament...
USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Grigori Mktyrjan; Nikolai Sologubov, Jevgeni Babitsh, Viktor Shuvalov, Vselodov Bobrov(9+2), Ivan Tregubov, Alfred Kutshevski, Dimitri Ukolov, Valentin Kusin, Aleksei Guryshev, Juri Pantjuhov, Viktor Nikiforov, Gendrich Sidorenkov, Juri Krylov, Aleksander Uvarov. (7 7 0 0 40-9)
2. USA: Willard Ikola, Don Rigazio; Rick Rodenheiser, Daniel McKinnon, Edward Sampson, John Matchefs, Richard Meredith, Richard Dougherty, Kenneth Purpur, John Mayasich(7+3), Bill Cleary, Wellington Burnett, Wendell Anderson, Eugene Campbell, Gordon Christian, Welden Olson, John Petroske. (7 5 0 2 33 -16)
3. Canada: Denis Brodeur, Keith Woodall; Floyd Martin, Howard Lee, Arthur Hurst, John McKenzie, James Logan(7+5), Paul Knox(7+5), Donald Rope, Byrle Klinck, William Colvin, Gerald Theberge, Alfred Horne, Charles Brooker, George Scholes, Robert White, Kenneth Laufman. (8 6 0 2 56-12).
These were the conditions, when the tournament took place for the very first time in the Sovjet Union! The Luzhniki indoor-arena was fabulous-looking, like a vaudeville-theatre. Having room for 15,000 spectators at this stage. Yet the modest communists had to take the final game to the Lenin Stadium. The result being the probably for-ever-unbeaten record of 55 000 spectators of a single IIHF tournament game. It was only in the 2000’s, when this world-record was beaten by a university-game, played by the equally modest Americans. The rate being 75,000 spectators. When this World Championship tournament became the last one being played partially on natural ice, this trick may have had its affects: the next tournament in Moscow took place in 1973. The tournament was finally won by Sweden with a their fabulous style; the pass of Eilert Määttä bounced to the goal from a skate of a Sovjet-defenceman. So, the game was a tie 4-4, enough for Sweden to the title.
The tournament lacked the north-American flavour. Obviously Canada and the US were not the only countries boycotting the tournament for the incidents in Hungary. But they may have had doubts about the neutrality of the arranging local officials too. This was the chance for Japan for the first performance in pool A. They said “Very good” eighteen times to the Swedish players. The game being won by Sweden with 18-0
Finland attended the tournament, after the local premier league had ended two days earlier. Still their performance was the best so far. The team won all the others, except the medal winning teams. They played well against the Czechoslovakians, losing only 0-3. This can be considered the real beginning of Finnish World Championship hockey, since from now on the team participated to every tournament. At times with special tricks, though. This also meant, that Finland was less or more the sixth best hockey country in the world.
Sweden: Thord Flodqvist, Yngve Kasslind; Lasse Björn, Vilgot Larsson, Hans Svedberg, Roland Stolz; Nisse Nilsson(10+6), Ronald Pettersson, Ehrling Lindström, Eilert Määttä, Sven Johansson, Hans Öberg, Lars-Erik Lundvall, Sigurd Bröms, Walter Olen, Hans Eriksson. (7 6 1 0 62-11).
2. USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Jevgeni Jerkin; Nikolai Sologubov, Ivan Tregubov, Gendrich Sidorenkov, Pavel Zibutovitsh, Vitali Kostarev; Konstantin Loktev(11+7), Aleksei Guryshev, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Aleksander Tsherepanov, Nikolai Hlystov, Jevgeni Babitsh, Vselodov Bobrov, Aleksander Uvarov, Vladimir Grebennikov. (7 6 1 0 77-9)
3. Czechoslovakia: Karel Straka, Jiri Kulicek; Karel Gut, Frantisek Tikal, Stanislav Sventek, Stanislav Bacilek, Jan Kasper; Miroslav Vlach(9+2), Slavomir Barton, Vilem Vaclav, Miroslav Binc, Vaclav Pantucek, Jiri Pokorny, Miroslav Cacek, Frantisek Vanek, Ladislav Grabovski, Bohumil Prowek. (7 5 1 1 66-9).
4. Finland: Esko Niemi, UntoWiitala; Mauno Nurmi, Matti Lampainen, Olli Knuutinen, Erkki Koiso, Aki Salonen; Yrjö Hakala(5+5), Teppo Rastio, Jorma Salmi, Voitto Soini, Matti Sundelin, Erkki Hytönen, Risto Aaltonen, Esko Luostarinen, Raimo Kilpiö, Pertti Nieminen. (7 4 0 3 28-33).
One era was ending here, when the tournament was played totally on the artificial ice for the last time! The Whitby Dunlops came, saw and conquered the Jordal Amfi, thus becoming the most prestigious National Club Team of Canada. It might be a bit hard to guess the main employer of the hometown of this Allan Cup winner. The US returned too, with a pretty average performance. Sadly, this was the home-town-Waterloo for the Norwegians: being a promising hockey team in 1950(6th ), 1951( 4th), 1952(8th ) and 1954(7th ) they haven’t placed in such a string in one decade on the pool A level. This obviously caused the Jordal Amfi to become full-covered only in 1972.
The Whitby team based its play on harsh checking against the Sovjets, thus winning them by 4-2. As well as the bronze-medal-goers from Sweden by 10-2. Sorry to say, this was peanuts to the freezing frenzy against the Finnish team: being beaten by 0-24. Without the Finnish team the Canadians very likely wouldn’t have been the top-four scorers. By coincidence the Finnish stars had a rest in this game. Though in return the other north-American team really had to fight against the Finns, the US winning only 4-2. The Finns won the shots-on-goal-stats by 40-13. So, despite the fierce Maple Leaf performance, the first Finnish artificial ice-rink, opened two years earlier in Tampere, province of Häme, started to reward itself. One can see the steps forward against the other big hockey countries: though the Sovjets won 10-0, the Swedes won only 5-2 and the Czechs 5-1. So the figures had become tolerable in a short time, something else than the big defeats called “Canada-Häme figures” in Finland. The latter one from the superiority of the cities of Tampere and Hämeenlinna of the time.
The Finnish hockey veterans have reminiscent of this Canada team players as robust and big guys, who never smiled. But time makes its tricks. You can say, that Connie Broden & Co. smiled at least on one occasion: after scoring a goal.
Canada: Roy Edwards, John Henderson; Ted O’Connor, Harry Sinden, Jean-Paul Lamirande, Alf Treen; Connie Broden(12+7), Jack McKenzie, Bob Attersley, Sid Smith, Tom O’Connor, Charlie Burns, Bus Gagnon, George Gosselin, George Samolenko, Sandy Air. (7 7 0 0 82-6)
2. USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Jevgeni Jerkin; Iva Tregubov, Dimitri Ukolov, Gendrich Sidorenkov, Nikolai Sologubov, Alfred Kuzevski; Venjamin Aleksandrov(4+10), Konstantin Loktev, Vladimir Elizarov, Juri Kopilov, Aleksander Tsherepanov, Juri Krilov, Juri Krylov, Juri Pantjuhov, Nikolai Hlestov, Aleksei Guryshev, Valentin Bistrov. (7 6 0 1 24-15)
3. Sweden: Thord Flodqvist, Rune Gudmundsson; Roland Stolz, Lasse Björn, Hans Svedberg, Vilgot Larsson, Gert Blomé; Sven Johansson(7+7), Carl-Göran Öberg, Nisse Nilsson, Ronald Pettersson, Sigurd Bröms, Göte Westerlund, Lars-Erik Lundvall, Erling Lindström, Hans Öberg, Karl-Sören Hedlund. (7 5 0 2 46-22).
6. Finland: Esko Niemi, Juhani Lahtinen; Matti Lampainen, Erkki Koiso, Mauno Nurmi, Pasi Vuorinen; Raimo Kilpiö(2+1), Heino Pulli, Teppo Rastio, Yrjö Hakala, Pertti Nieminen, Eino Pollari, Jorma Salmi, Voitto Soini, Esko Luostarinen, Kari Aro, Erkki Hytönen. (7 1 1 5 9-51).
Now something really significant in Finnish hockey took place! For the very first time a major hockey country lost a point to the team. And in a really magnificent way; when the scores were against Finland 1-4, they finally gained a tie by 4-4. This happened in a qualification game. For some reason one can easily imagine, that the opponent was the neighbouring country called Sweden. After the game the notorius future showed its signs as well; Finland lost the last game against Italy 1-2. Luckily Finland had already ensured its way to the final series, where the most significant achievement was a narrow loss of 1-2 against Sweden. But some Finnish people might have felt happy, because Sweden ended up fourth.
Canada was represented by their amateur champion again, this time the club team was called Belleville McFarlands. Like the national teams of the time, this team had a lot of both will-be and has-been players of the NHL. The most famous player of this team was later playing for, for example, the Montreal Canadiens and St. Louis Blues. He was called Red Berenson and he had his 19th birthday just before the World Championship. This team was probably one of the prime examples of the dual attitiude to the Canadian teams of the time; on one hand the IIHF people have named them as The Flying McFarlands, on the other hand they have been named as skillers and killers in the same sentence. The worst break worth mentioning being the penalty of 18 minutes by Al Dewsbury in a qualification game against Czechoslovakia. The Canadian players have a remiscent of wearing their hockey gear in a hotel, right before a buss-ride to the arena. This was in the qualification stage...
The celebrating Maple Leaf players lost their final game against Czechoslovakia, their home arena was now full-covered. It was named as the Prague Winter Palace, having a capacity of 15,000 spectators. Their win meant same points with the American team and winning a bronze-medal by better goals-for-and-against. One could easily imagine a bit the same kind of neigbouring rivalry between the Canadians and the Americans to the one with the Swedish and the Finnish...
Canada: Gordon Bell, Roy Edwards; Jean-Paul Lamirande, Floyd Crawford, Al Dewsbury, Maurice Benoit; Ike Hildebrand, Barton Bradley, Wayne Brown, Lou Smrke, John McLellan, Pete Conacher, Denis Boucher, Red Berenson(9+4), George Gosselin, Paul Payette, Davey Jones, Fiori Goegan. (8 7 0 1 60-9)
2. USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Jevgeni Jerkin; Nikolai Sologubov, Ivan Tregubov, Nikolai Snetkov, Dimitri Ukolov, Gendrich Sidorenkov; Konstantin Loktev, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Juri Pantjuhov, Juri Krylov, Aleksei Guryshev, Viktor Prjasnikov, Igor Dekonski, Jevgeni Groshev(6+4), Viktor Jakusev, Juri Baulin. (8 7 0 1 44-15).
3. Czechoslovakia: Vladimir Nardchal, Jiri Kulicek; Karel Gut, Frantisek Tikal, Rudolf Potsch, Jan Kasper, Stanislav Bacilek; Jan Starsi, Karol Fako, Miroslav Vlach, Jaroslav Volf, Josef Golonka(7+4), Jaroslav Jirik, Bohumil Prosek, Frantisek Vanek, Josef Cerny. (8 5 0 3 46-22).
6. Finland: Esko Niemi, Juhani Lahtinen; Matti Haapaniemi, Erkki Koiso, Matti Lampainen, Kalevi Numminen, Aaro Nurminen; Raimo Kilpiö(5+3), Teppo Rastio, Jorma Salmi, Yrjö Hakala, Juhani Wahlsten, Jouni Seistamo, Heino Pulli, Pertti Nieminen, Esko Luostarinen, Unto Nevalainen. (8 1 1 6 20-44).
Goalie: Nikolai Putshkov (USSR 1954-59)
Defenceman: Jean-Paul Lamirande (Canada 1958-59), Nikolai Sologubov (USSR 1954-59)
Forward: Bill Warwick (Canada 1955).
This was the decade, that a full-roof arena became a standard on IIHF pool A-level tournament. When Finland reached the Canadian level in the tournaments, the last Maple Leaf amateur national team made history. Sadly by scoring less goals than allowing ones, while becoming the fourth team of the tournament. The national club teams before them had been allowed a lot of allowances... When the Sovjets finally became the new wave on the World and the Olympic tournaments, Tampere was still a forerunner of the Finnish facilities with its first-ever national full-covered hockey arena. A metropol in a Finnish scale, Helsinki, behaved in a Wall Street manner, buying the stars of the other Finnish hockey cities. Thus filling the lack of quality of contemporary Helsinki players, playing in their Sagrada Familia –phase built hockey arena. To some extent the thing still goes on in Helsinki...
These Games were the beginning of this small town! In 1948 there wasn’t even a road there. By 1952 there was one chair lift, a restaurant and a few log-cabins bought from the US Air Force. When the IOC had acccepted Squaw Valley as a host of the Games, the place was built in five years to the form remembered by the sports enthusiasts of the time. The valley was owned by a multi-millionaire called Cushing. The president of the organising committee happened to be... called Cushing.
The arena in this tournament was named the Blythe Arena. This arena started the series of Olympic and World Championship held in full-covered arenas by coincidence. Because the weather suddenly turned warmer, this open-air arena was hastedly covered as a whole, with a transparent curtain at the open end. On these conditions Finland got its gretest-ever win in the international tournaments, winning Australia 19-2 and for the first time the Finns had more goals scored than allowed. Though one has to mention the great-victory to have taken place on a training-spot like outdoor-rink... When the Finnish Olympic Committee didn’t want to send a hockey team in the first place, their mind changed, when the audience had collected the necessary money. So, the team entered so late, that it became impossible to qualify to the pool A. But since this tournament there hasn’t been a pool B tournament for Finland!
When the US was hosting the Games the previous time, they had achieved a silver-medal with an unknown college-team. I a tournament with four teams. This time the level of the tournament was more demanding, but the US got a gold-medal with an unknown college-team. Canada was represented by Kitchener-Waterloo Flying Dutchmen again, because the coach Bobby Bauer wanted to make up his “flaw” of 1956.
USA: John McCartan, Larry Palmer; John Kirrane, John Mayasich, Rod Paavola, Bill Christian, Bob Cleary, Paul Johnson, Robert McVey, Eugene Grazia, Tom Williams, Richard Meredith, Richard Rodenheiser, Weldon Olson, Bill Cleary(7+7), Roger Christian, Edwyn Owen.
(7 7 0 0 48-17)
2. Canada: Don Head, Harold Hurley: Harry Sinden, Joh Douglas, Darryl Sly, Maurice Benoit, George Samolenko, Bob Attersley, Fred Etcher(9+12), Cliff Pennington, Bob Forhan, Robert McKnight, Floyd Martin, Kenneth Laufman, Don Rope, James Connelly, Bob Rousseau. (7 6 0 1 55-15)
3. USSR: Nikolai Putshkov, Jevgeni Jerkin; Nikolai Sologubov, Juri Baulin, Nikolai Karpov, Gendrich Sidorenkov, Alfred Kutschevski, Venjamin Aleksandrov(7+5), Aleksander Almetov, Konstantin Loktev, Mihail Bytshkov, Vladimir Grebennikov, Juri Tsitsinov, Jevgeni Groshev, Viktor Jakushev, Viktor Prjasnikov. (7 4 1 2 40-23)
7. Finland: Juhani Lahtinen, Esko Niemi; Kalevi Numminen, Yrjö Hakala, Matti Lampainen, Erkki Koiso; Raimo Kilpiö(9+3), Jouni Seistamo, Heino Pulli, Pertti Nieminen, Esko Luostarinen, Teppo Rastio, Juhani Wahlsten, Voitto Soini, Jorma Salmi, Kalevi Rassa, Seppo Vainio. (6 3 1 2 51-23).
This was the very fist time a hockey tournament was being televized in Finland. And it certainly paid its dues; like an omen of the BIG wins of the end of the decade Team Finland played brilliantly against the Swedes, the Czechs and the Sovjets (though you can say the weather helped with the last one) for two periods. Also the Americans faced quite a resistence for one period, even the Canucks. In the end of the second period “The Lions” were leading 4-3 against the Swedes, the final result being 4-6.
Canada was represented by the defeated Allan Cup final team, the Trail Smoke Eaters. Them being the last Canadian club team to get the IIHF World Championship title. Only Czechoslovakia could give them any resistence, leading the game til the fifteenth minute of the third period. Then Hugh McIntyre skated through the whole ice to score 1-1. The Sovjets were clearly defeated by the Canadians, 5-1. Seth Martin was rewarded as the best goali of the tournament, once-an-NHL-goalie Claud Cyr was rewarded as a stand-by-goaltender. The Czechs made sure again, that the Sovjets were “only” a bronze-medal team. The USSR showed its fair play by hurting Jan Starsi so, that he was unable to play. After he had scored the first two goals of the game. The Sovjets did even lead 2-4, but finally “dropped” by losing 4-6. These were the last games on an outdoor-rink. The innovative Swiss organisers did freeze a local swimming pool. Thus the teams looking more like tourists than tourists themselves; the ice being too bright they had to play with their sunglasses on. The arena in Geneva the rink had perspex boards.
The politics took its toe too in this tournament. Since the western German players refused to play against the Easter Germany because of their flag, the game was judged to Eastern Germany by 5-0. According the legislation of the Federal Republic of Germany the harp and the hammer on the eastern-German flag was desecrating the flag. One can only wonder, what would be the result with the modern fan-flags?
Canada: Seth Martin, Claude Cyr; Darryl Sly, Harry Smith, Don Fletcher, George Ferguson, Robert Christofoli; Jackie McLeod(10+2), Dave Rusnell, Harold Jones, Hugh McIntyre, Michel Legace, Walt Peacosh, Cal Hockley, Norm Lenardon, Ad Tambellini, Robert Kromm. (7 6 1 0 45-11)
2. Czechoslovakia: Josef Mikolas, Vladimir Nardchal; Jan Kasper, Stanislav Sventek, Frantisek Gregor, Rudolf Potsch, Jaromir Bünter; Vlastimil Bubnik(5+4), Miroslav Vlach, Jiri Dolana, Jan Starsi, Vaclav Pantucek, Josef Cerny, Bohumil Prosek, Ludek Bukac, Frantisek Vanek, Zdenek Kepak. (7 6 1 0 33-9).
3. USSR: Vladimir Tshninov, Viktor Konovalenko; Gendrich Sidorenkov, Ivan Tregubov, Aleksander Ragulin, Nikolai Sologubov; Boris Majorov(7+10), Vjatseslav Starsinov, Konstantin Loktev, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Nikolai Snetkov, Aleksander Almetov, Jevgeni Majorov, Viktor Jakushev, Viktor Tshiplakov, Vladimir Jursinov. (7 5 0 2 51-20).
7. Finland: Juhani Lahtinen, Isto Virtanen; Kalevi Numminen, Jorma Suokko, Matti Haapaniemi, Erkki Koiso, Mauno Nurmi; Raimo Kilpiö(5+1), Teppo Rastio, Anssi Salonen, Pertti Nieminen, Esko Luostarinen, Jouni Seistamo, Timo Ahlqvist, Pentti Hyytiäinen, Seppo Vainio, Jorma Rikala. (7 1 1 5 19-43).
Again politics played it’s role in the Cold War times! Since the eastern Germans didn’t get a visa to the US, the Sovjet Union protested by not participating. For obvious reasons the Czechoslovakians did the same. Just like in Moscow 1957, these countries were replaced by the top pool B countries for one tournament. Finland was leading 4-2 against Great Britain, losing finally 5-7. This was the time, when Great Britain had 500 registered ice-hockey players. The Finnish Team was in Colorado Springs, but maybe their head was between Chicago and Denver...
Sweden won tournament in their own style. The Allan Cup winner Galt Terriers –naturally the Team Canada – showed their fair play by naming the new World Champions as “The Cry-Babies”. For the United States this domestic tournament was a last World Championship –medal tournament for some time. The tournament played in The Boradmoor World arena meant permanently an era of full-roof arenas in the international tournaments. Colorado Springs was a great winter sports resort. Thayer Tutt happened to own the hotel accomodating the teams. He also happened to be one of the leading figures in the IIHF at the time.
Despite being defeated by the Great Britain, Finland was clearly the fourth best team in the tournament. Earning the first-ever international medal for the country, a European Championship silver medal. And the Norwegians got the European Championship bronze. After this tournament Finland really started to look for the REAL medal...
Ruotsi: Lennart Häggroth, Kjell Svensson; Bertil Karlsson, Bert-Ola Nordlander, Roland Stolz, Gert Blomé, Nils Johansson; Nisse Nilsson(12+6), Ulf Sterner, Sven Johansson, Anders Andersson, Per-Olof Herdin, Eilert Määttä, Ronald Pettersson, Lars-Erik Lundvall, Leif Andersson. (7 0 0 671-10).
2. Kanada: Harold Hurley, John Zofiak; Harry Smith, Ted Maki, Jack Douglas, Bill Mitchell, Bob Robertson; Jackie McLeod(5+7), Joe Malloy, Floyd Martin, Bill Wylie, Robert McKnight, Tod Sloan, Bobby Brown, Joe Hogan, Bob Mader, Don Rope. (7 6 0 1 58-12).
3. USA: Mike Larson, Jim Logue; John Mayasich, Brian McKay, Tom Martin, Gordie Tuttle; Paul Coppo(9+7), Dick Roberge, Reggie Meserve, Jackie Poole, Oskar Mahle, Don Hall, Roger Christian, Bill Christian, Herb Brooks, Ken Johansson, Bill Daley. (5 0 2 54-23).
4. Suomi: Juhani Lahtinen, Risto Kaitala; Kalevi Numminen, Jarmo Wasama, Jorma Suokko, Matti Lampainen; Heino Pulli(8+3), Seppo Nikkilä, Mauno Nurmi, Teppo Rastio, Jouni Seistamo, Matti Keinonen, Rauno Lehtiö, Juhani Wahlsten, Pertti Nieminen, Pentti Hyytiäinen, Kari Aro. (7 3 0 4 32-42).
Sweden tried to remain neutral; so the top countries of hockey found no trouble to get together again. This tournament showed the Sovjets had really paid their dues, here started the era of the Sovereign Sovjets. Their best key to success being a total team-play. At the same time the Trail Smoke Eaters, as an Allan Cup winner, ended the Canadian club team era. This team is not that well remembered as the ones being the World Champions of 1939 and 1961. Especially the latter one.
This tournament was also beginning of the Swedish IIHF tournaments under a full-roof arena! The phase of building being like Rome – not built in one day. First the Johanneshov arena was built as an open-door rink, the real indoor-arena in Sweden being built in Linköping in 1958, before Stockholm. Johanneshov being covered by November 1962. The same arena being qualified to an IIHF tournament even in 1981. The “Tre Kronor” won the Sovjets 2-1, but... this time there was no Swedish style; the Sovjets winning Canada 4-2 and thereby getting enough goals for-and-against. This meant a string of “only” nine years of Sovjet domination of the international hockey.
Team Finland showed by its performances, that maybe the sixth place in World Hockey the previous year was a coincidence. Though “The Lions” won the USA for the first time on the IIHF tournament, the modest numbers being 11-3. Then came the Germans; Finland was leading 3-2, ending up finally to 4-4. Against the Eastern Germany the Finns played a total shut-out. But to the wrong end, the East-Germans winning 1-0. Then came the mathematics with goals-for-and-against, bringing Finland the fifth place. So the Finns reached their position with Swedish style...
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Viktor Zaitsev; Eduard Ivanov, Aleksander Ragulin, Viktor Kuzkin, Vitali Davidov, Nikolai Sologubov; Vladimir Jursinov(5+7), Vjatsheslav Starsinov, Aleksander Almetov, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Boris Majorov, Stanislav Petusov, Juri Volkov, Viktor Jakushev, Jevgeni Majorov, Juri Paramoskin. (7 6 0 1 50-9).
2. Sweden: Kjell Svensson, Lennart Häggroth; Roland Stolz, Nils Johansson, Bert-Ola Nordlander, Gert Blomé, Bertil Karlsson; Sven Johansson(6+6), Ulf Sterner, Karl-Göran Öberg, Uno Öhrlund, Hans Mildh, Ronald Pettersson, Eilert Määttä, Nisse Nilsson, Lars-Erik Lundvall, Per-Olof Herdin. (7 6 0 1 44-10).
3. Czechoslovakia: Vlado Dzurilla, Josef Mikolas; Frantisek Tikal, Rudolf Potsch, Stanislav Sventek, Jan Kasper, Frantisek Gregor; Jiri Dolana(8+2), Jaroslav Jirik, Miroslav Vlach, Frantisek Vanek, Josef Cerny, Jaroslav Valter, Jan Starsi, Vlastimil Bubnik, Ludek Bukac, Stanislav Pryl. (7 5 1 1 41-16).
5. Finland: Juhani Lahtinen, Urpo Ylönen; Kalevi Numminen, Jarmo Wasama, Matti Lampainen, Rauno Lehtiö, Jorma Suokko, Ilkka Mesikämmen; Matti Keinonen(6+3), Raimo Kilpiö, Heino Pulli, Matti Reunamäki, Pentti Hyytiäinen, Jouni Seistamo, Esko Luostarinen, Pentti Rautalin. (7 1 1 5 20-35).
Such is life! Austria had gained a World Championship bronze-medal in 1931 and in 1947. By this time the team had wandered gradually to the pool B level, appearing occasionally on pool A level by sheer luck. So, it’s pretty fair to say, that they had their first domestic Olympic hockey tournament a bit too late. If they were happy for a while, Team Finland spoilt their party by winning the qualification game 8-2. The Finns reached the sixth place with a familiar performance: first winning a strong team from USA 3-2, then seventh-place team called Western-Germany won Finland 2-1. Like in the future, there was one man: Ernst Trautwein. But then the team won the Swiss for the first time on Olympic with no allowed goals in a single game: 4-0.
Historically Canada gave up their national club team tradition. Though the assembled team was signed in to Winnipeg University. One of the players, Rod Seiling, had already got a little experience from the NHL. This time he wasn’t treated like Jim Thorpe, though. The Maple Leaf team became fourth, quite good, but not good enough for the fatherland of modern ice-hockey. The IIHF made its own decisions for the first time, anyway... by counting only the games of the four best and thus getting a shared bronze-medal for Canada and Czechoslovakia in the IIHF World Championship standings.
The Sovjet Union continued its triumph being the number one team with 14 points. Sweden, Czechoslovakia and Canada reaching 10 points. Canada could have been the Olympic gold-medal winner, if they had scored some more goals against the Sovjets... Meanwhile Finland ended up to 4 points with the US and the Western-Germany. Also this time the Finns were a bit lucky with goals-for-against...
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Boris Zaitsev; Aleksander Ragulin, Eduard Ivanov, Viktor Kuzkin, Vitali Davidov, Oleg Zaitsev; Konstantin Loktev, Viktor Jakusev(7+3), Boris Majorov, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Leonid Volkov, Aleksander Almetov, Jevgeni Majorov, Stanislav Petusov. (8 8 0 0 73-11)
2. Sweden: Kjell Svensson, Lennart Häggroth; Gert Blomé, Roland Stolz, Bert-Ola Nordlander, Nils Johansson; Sven Johansson(8+3), Ulf Sterner, Anders Andersson, Ronald Pettersson, Eilert Määttä, Lars-Erik Lundvall, Uno Öhrlund, Nils Nilsson, Karl-Göran Öberg, Lennart Johansson, Hans Mildh. (8 6 0 2 59-18).
3. Czechoslovakia: Vladimir Nardchal, Vlado Dzurilla; Rudolf Potsch, Frantisek Gregor, Frantisek Tikal, Ladislav Smid, Stanislav Sventek; Jiri Dolana(7+3), Josef Cerny, Jaroslav Valter, Josef Golonka, Miroslav Vlach, Jiri Holik, Jaroslav Holik, Vlastimil Bubnik, Jan Klapac, Stanislav Pryl. (8 6 0 2 55-21)
(3. WC: Canada: Seth Martin, Ken Broderick; Henry Akervall, Barry McKenzie, Terry O’Malley, Rod Seiling, Gary Begg, Gary Dineen(3+6), George Swarbrick, Roger Bourbonnais, Terry Clancy, Brian Conacher, Raymond Cadieaux, Paul Conlin, Bob Forhan, Marshall Johnston. (8 6 0 2 46-18)).
6. Finland: Juhani Lahtinen, Urpo Ylönen; Rauno Lehtiö, Ilkka Mesikämmen, Jorma Suokko, Jarmo Wasama, Kalevi Numminen; Heino Pulli(5+1), Seppo Nikkilä, Matti Reunamäki, Raimo Kilpiö, Juhani Wahlsten, Jorma Peltonen, Esko Kaonpää, Esko Luostarinen, Jouni Seistamo. (8 3 0 5 18-33).
One city-like town in the Finnish southern coast may not have been quite aware of the traditional Finnish sports organising, trying to postpone this year’s hockey World Championship. So Tampere, the biggest inland-city in Northern Europe and the Montreal of Finnish hockey, took the responsibility avoided by Helsinki. Despite people in the province of Häme being traditionally known to be slow in their action, the first Finnish indoor-arena was built in the world-record time of this era. But this meant a gradual ending of the Häme dominance in Finnish hockey, though team Finland still had many players from Tampere for years... The pool B games were taken care by cities of Turku, Pori and Rauma.
The tie against Sweden 2-2 is better remembered by Finnish people than the first one six years earlier. Even... after the game ended one person got a heart-attack and died. Against the other great hockey nations team Finland lost their games playing brilliantly. Facing after that a poor game against the teams of the same level or of lower one. While reading the statistics, it’s obvious, that most of all the forwards were too excited about playin in a domestic arena. In this tournament you could also see the earliest blooming of the GDR-sports culture: after leaving the second period totally exhausted they played like tigers the third period winning finally Finland 3-2. This tournament also sealed the Sovjet era in IIHF hockey.
The most memorable appearance of the north-Americans was made by the American goalie, Tom Haugh. Though his temperament didn’t help his team any further than to the sixth place in the final standings. Canada, despite having a lot of top players too in their team, ended up fourth with a routine-like performance. If an off-side goal scored by Reijo “Mintsu” Hakanen in Finland-Sweden game would have been allowed, 3-2 would have meant equal points with the Swedish and the Canadians. But that didn’t matter then in Finland...
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Viktor Zinger; Eduard Ivanov, Viktor Kuzkin, Aleksander Ragulin, Vladimir Brezhnev, Vitali Davidov; Aleksander Almetov(7+5), Konstantin Loktev, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Vjatsheslav Starsinov, Boris Majorov, Anatoli Ionov, Viktor Jakushev, Anatoli Firsov, Leonid Volkov, Juri Volkov. (7 7 0 0 51-13)
2. Czechoslovakia: Vlado Dzurilla, Vladimir Nardchal; Frantisek Tikal, Josef Capla, Rudolf Potsch, Jan Suchy, Jaroslav Meixner; Josef Golonka(6+8), Jaroslav Jirik, Josef Cerny, Frantisek Sevcik, Vaclav Nedomansky, Stanislav Pryl, Jan Klapac, Jiri Holik, Jaroslav Holik, Zdenek Kepak. (7 6 0 1 43-10)
3. Sweden: Kjell Svensson, Leif Holmqvist; Lennart Svedberg, Gert Blomé, Roland Stolz, Nils Johansson, Bert-Ola Nordlander; Tord Lundström(6+3), Ronald Pettersson, Nils Nilsson, Eilert Määttä, Sven Tumba, Uno Öhrlund, Anders Andersson, Carl-Göran Öberg, Lars-Åke Sivertsson, Håkan Wickberg. (7 4 1 2 33-17).
7. Finland; Juhani Lahtinen, Urpo Ylönen; Jarmo Wasama(3+1), Kalevi Numminen, Lalli Partinen, Lalli Partinen, Ilkka Mesikämmen, Pentti Lindegren; Juhani Wahlsten, Matti Keinonen, Seppo Nikkilä, Matti Reunamäki, Raimo Kilpiö, Reijo Hakanen, Lasse Oksanen, Pentti Rautalin, Heino Pulli, Jaakko Honkanen. (7 1 1 5 14-27).
One can say, that this tournament took place on a fair ground. The attractions were playing in an arena called Hala Tivoli! The Sovjet triumph kept continuing. But the Swedes made a slight crack to an otherwise perfect performance with a tie 3-3. Then the eastern Germans spoiled the Swedish triumph by winning them by 4-1. This meant the fourth place of the tournament both for the World Championship and the European one for “Tre Kronor”. One reason, of course, being also the exceptionally motivated Canada’s national team, especially a goalie called Seth Martin. Despite the opponents might have thought so, he was not related to an Egyptian God called Seth.
Team Finland’s Canadian head coach/manager Joe Wirkkunen had it after this tournament. After working for years with the national team he thought he hadn’t made any progress. Though he had only started a modern junior coaching in the country and had brought a long-run thinking into Finnish hockey. He especially hated the German teams of the time, that always for some reason were exceptionally good against Finland. He also face the following criticism from the contemporary press: “we always lose against the big teams with a brilliant play, and lose against the minor teams with a poor play”. One might think, why Finland is on top these days. The Finnish contemoporary stars consider Wirkkunen to have done 85 percent of the top-reaching work, though the other coach is better remembered.
Later Hala Tivoli arranged a tournament on a little higher level. It was the European Championship tournament in basket-ball. Finland remained again in the seventh play in hockey, a little below average. The US team had the same points, but this time they had the better goals-for-and-against. One thing affecting could have been, that a Finnish superstar Matti “Mölli” Keinonen had been banned from playing in the Finnish League. That is, because his home-club Rauman Lukko disliked his moving to the neighbouring city, and to a Club called Rosenlewin Urheilijat -38
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Viktor Zinger; Vladimir Brezhnev, Aleksander Ragulin, Oleg Zaitsev, Viktor Kuzkin, Vitali Davidov; Venjamin Aleksandrov(9+8), Aleksander Almetov, Viktor Jakushev, Vjatseslav Starsinov, Konstanin Loktev, Vladimir Vikulov, Boris Majorov, Viktor Polupanov, Anatoli Firsov, Anatoli Ionov. (7 6 1 0 55-7).
2. Czechoslovakia: Vlado Dzurilla, Jiri Holecek; Rudolf Potsch, Frantisek Tikal, Ladislav Schmid, Jan Suchy, Jaroslav Meixner; Stanislav Pryl(6+4), Vaclav Nedomansky, Milan Koks, Josef Golonka, Jaroslav Jirik, Jiri Holik, Jan Klapac, Frantisek Sevcik, Jaroslav Holik, Josef Cerny. (7 6 0 1 32-15).
3. Canada: Seth Martin, Ken Broderick; Gary Begg, Barry McKenzie, Lorne Davis, Terry O’Malley, Harvey Schmidt; George Faulkner(6+2), Francis Huck, Roger Bourbonnais, Marshall Johnston, Raymond Cadieaux, Jackie McLeod, Bill McMillan, Morris Mott, Paul Conlin, Rick McKay.(7 5 0 2 33-10).
7. Finland; Juhani Lahtinen, Risto Kaitala; Lalli Partinen, Kalevi Numminen, Ilkka Mesikämmen, Juha Rantasila, Antti Heikkilä; Reijo Hakanen(4+1), Lasse Oksanen, Jorma Peltonen, Juhani Jylhä, Esa Isaksson, Raimo Killpiö, Matti Reunamäki, Matti Keinonen, Jorma Vehmanen, Erkki Mononen. (7 2 0 6 18-43).
The Wiener Stadthalle, a ten-year old arena, faced ice-fishing; one can say, that the boards were covered only with so-called ”fishing nets”. The Austrian hockey culture showed some recovery, their team managing to keep their positions in pool B. Another has-been-on-medal country, Switzerland, dropped off to the pool C, though with a narrow margin. Economically these countries weren’t doing so bad, especially the Austrians offering professional careers to the old Finnish national team stars. And Switzerland a bit later. Maybe a better investment would have been national junior coaching...
On the pool A level Canada had entered with their best assembled team so far. The team also included Carl Brewer, he happened to have been a star in the NHL. After a narrow loss 1-2 against the Sovjets the Canadians had a break against the Swedes, losing 0-6. So the Swedish style paid again its dues in a form of a silver-medal. This was the only time for Seth Martin not being rewarded as the best goalie in an IIHF tournament. He might have been a bit more interested in his next season in the NHL...
In the vry beginning the Finnish team got the following attention: A Canadian called Roger Bourbonnais burnt his fuse to a constant grinning of a certain Matti “Mölli” Keinonen. Then, when Team Finland really won a legendary hockey country for the first time, the result effected even to the final standings. A Czechoslovakian loss 1-3 meant them to become the fourth. But again Finland had loaned some Swedish style. The Czechoslovakian team lost their nerve: their gate to the ice broke down during the second period and took a long time to be repaired. By coincidence the coaching Finland had come from Czechoslovakia. Gustav Bubnik was one of those 1949 Czechoslovakian World Champions being honoured by being sent to the salt mines.
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Viktor Zinger; Aleksander Ragulin, Valeri Nikitin, Oleg Zaitsev, Eduard Ivanov, Viktor Kuzkin, Vitali Davidov; Anatoli Firsov(11+11), Viktor Polupanov, Aleksander Almetov, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Vladimir Vikulov, Viktor Jakushev, Vjatseslav Starsinov, Boris Majorov, Viktor Jarloslavjev, Viktor Jakushev. ( 7 7 0 0 58-9)
2. Sweden: Kjell Svensson, Leif Holmqvist; Roland Stolz, Gert Blomé, Eilert Määttä, Nils Johansson, Arne Carlsson, Bert-Ola Nordlander; Carl-Göran Öberg(5+1), Hans Lindberg, Björn Palmqvist, Ulf Sterner, Nils Nilsson, Lars-Göran Nilsson, Stig-Göran Johansson, Leif Henriksson, Folke Bengstsson, Ronald Pettersson. (7 4 1 2 31-22)
3. Canada : Seth Martin, Wayne Stephenson; Carl Brewer, Jack Bownass, Terry O’Malley, Gary Begg, Barry McKenzie; Francis Huck(5+6), Adolfo Tambellini, Morris Mott, Bill McMillan, Roger Bourbonnais, Ted Hargreaves, Gary Dineen, Marshall Johnston, Jean Cusson, Raymond Cadieaux. (7 4 1 2 28-15).
6. Finland: Urpo Ylönen, Juhani Lahtinen; Pekka Kuusisto, Kalevi Numminen, Pekka Marjamäki, Ilkka Mesikämmen, Raimo Määttänen; Juhani Wahlsten(4+0), Reijo Hakanen, Lasse Oksanen, Jorma Peltonen, Matti Keinonen, Matti Reunamäki, Kari Johansson, Esa Peltonen, Raimo Kilpiö, Mattti Harju, Jorma Vehmanen. (2 1 4 14-24).
And the times they are a-changing… this tournament being the last Olympic tournament and a World Championship at the same time. The Sovjet Union’s triumph continued. But Polupanov of their stars continued drinkin heavily and disappeared from their team after this tournament. Like in the two previous tournaments the best four scorers were Sovjets. Though Czechoslovakia showed them some humane-faced socialism by beating them 5-4. By coincidende they had to be grateful team Finland. Without them the Czechoslovakians wouldn’t have got their medal.
This time Team Finland didn’t get confused about the perspex boards in the hockey arena called Stade de Glace. When Team Finland defeated Canada, the result meant The Maple Leaf team to remain one point behind the second-placed team. Finland won with a brilliant playing, the result being 5-2, and the Finns had definitely earned their fifth place. One reason for this performance may very well have been the new generation in defence. The Swedish showed their style this time by entering to the game to express sympathy to their neighbour. When the changing of players was unfinished, they even shouted five in Finnish: viis, viis... Team Sweden remained one point behind the medals. So, Finland was finally a true number five team in a tournament and the goals-for-and-against was on the plus for the first time on the A level. When one considers the qualification game too... The bravest man in team being definitely Matti Keinonen. He was the star of the Canada –game and he was the fourth best scorer as a whole in the team. All this with a fractured ankle.
The French, known to be modest, built a brilliant arena for the tournament. But they were very modest in the pool B, becoming the last team in the series. The result being defeated five times with a humble goals-for-and-against: 9-32. The proudest French players being peculiarly, always from Quebec overseas...
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Viktor Zinger; Viktor Blinov, Vitali Davidov, Viktor Kuzkin, Aleksander Ragulin, Oleg Zaitsev, Igor Pomizhevski; Anatoli Firsov(12+4), Viktor Polupanov, Vjatseslav Starsinov, Vladimir Vikulov, Boris Majorov, Jevgeni Mishakov, Juri Moisejev, Anatoli Ionov, Venjamin Aleksandrov, Jevgeni Zinin. (7 6 0 1 48-10).
2. Czechoslovakia: Vladdo Dzurilla, Vladimir Nardchal; Josef Horesovsky, Jan Suchy, Karel Masopust, Oldrich Machac, Frantisek Pospisil; Josef Golonka(4+6), Jan Hrbaty, Vaclav Nedomansky, Jan Havel, Josef Cerny, Frantisek Sevcik, Peter Reima, Jiri Holik, Jaroslav Jirik, Jiri Kochta, Jan Klapac. (7 5 1 1 33-17).
3. Canada; Ken Broderick, Wayne Stephenson; Marshall Johnston, Barry McKenzie, Brian Glennie, Paul Conlin, Terry O’Malley; Francis Huck(4+5), Morris Mott, Roger Bourbonnais, Raymond Cadieaux, Jack O’Shea, Ted Hargreaves, Gary Dineen, Steven Monteith, Gerry Linder, Bill McMillan, Herb Pinder. (7 5 0 2 28-15).
5. Finland: Urpo Ylönen, Pentti Koskela; Ilpo Koskela, Paavo Tirkkonen, Seppo Lindström, Lalli Partinen, Juha Rantasila, Pekka Kuusisto; Lasse Oksanen(5+3), Juhani Wahlsten, Veli-Pekka Ketola, Matti Keinonen, Matti Harju, Jorma Peltonen, Pekka Leimu, Matti Reunamäki, Esa Peltonen, Kari Johansson. ( 8 4 1 3 28-25).
Because there was spring in Prague, the runner-up city took care of the World Championship tournament! The Sovjet coach Tarasov talked the following way: “Sports is sports, politics is politics.” Interesting, when even picking the leaves in autumn was politics there. For obvious reasons the Czechs were especially focused on the Sovjet –games. So the Sovjet Union lost even two times in one tournament, the thing happened for the last time in the Canadian National Club Team days. The thing saving the Sovjets was their goals-for-and-against. The most relaxed Sovjet was a goal-referee, falling asleep in the middle of a game. The Swedish Team held their positions with the Swedish style, their games against Czechoslovakia being after the fierce USSR-CSSR games. Naturally this meant the silver medal for the Swedes.
This was the very first tournament, that had North-America totally in a stand-by position. The Canadian team was this time “only” the fourth in the tournament. In a nordic country of the time this place would have been highly regarded... USA being clearly a “just-representing” team. For very obvious reasons the IIHF North-American hockey faced a series of setbacks the next decade. Finland became the fifth in this tournament with a routine-like play, Gustav Bubnik leaving after this as well. But becoming a mythical figure in the reminiscent of Finnish hockey people...
By the end of this decade the nature of the Olympic/World Championship tournaments had changed. The goalie of the decade, Seth Martin, made a break-through of a goalie-mask in Europe. Though, the Swedish goalies weren’t fans of this model. Even the Canucks and the Americans started to wear a helmet ever-more often. And most of all, the Sovjets had created a first truly European style of play…
USSR: Viktor Konovalenko, Viktor Zinger; Jevgeni Poladev, Igor Romishevski, Aleksander Ragulin, Vladimir Lutshenko, Vitali Davidov, Viktor Kuzkin; Anatoli Firsov(10+4), Valeri Harlamov, Aleksander Maltsev, Vladimir Petrov, Vjatseslav Starsinov, Jevgeni Zimin, Boris Mihailov, Jevgeni Misakov, Vladimir Vikulov, Aleksander Jakushev,Vladimir Jursinov. (10 8 0 2 59-23).
2. Sweden: Leif Holmqvist, Gunnar Bäckman; Arne Carlsson, Lennart Svedberg, Lars-Erik Sjöberg, Bert-Ola Nordlander, Nils Johansson, Kjell-Rune Milton; Ulf Sterner(5+9), Stig-Göran Johansson, Lars-Göran Nilsson, Stefan Karlsson, Tord Lundström, Roger Olsson, Håkan Nygren, Björn Palmqvist, Leif Henriksson, Mats Hysing, Dick Yderström. (10 80 2 45-19).
3. Czechoslovakia: Vlado Dzurilla, Miroslav Lacky; Oldrich Machac, Frantisek Pospisil, Josef Horesovsky, Jan Suchy, Vladimir Bednar; Jaroslav Holik(4+10), Vaclav Nedomansky, Josef Cerny, Jan Hrbaty, Josef Golonka, Frantisek Sevcik, Jiri Holik, Richard Farda, Jan Klapac, Jaroslav Jirik, Jan Havel, Josef Augusta. (10 8 0 2 40-20).
5. Finland: Urpo Ylönen, Lasse Kiili; Juha Rantasila, Lalli Partinen, Ilpo Koskela, Seppo Lindström, Pekka Marjamäki; Jorma Peltonen(3+4), Lauri Mononen, Esa Isaksson, Matti Keinonen, Esa Peltonen, Pekka Leimu, Lasse Oksanen, Juhani Wahlsten, Veli-Pekka Ketola, Matti Harju, Juhani Jylhä, Kari Johansson. (8 2 0 8 26-52).
Goalie: Seth Martin (Canada 1961, 1963, 1964, 1966-67)
Defenfeman: Roland Stolz (Sweden 1960-69), Aleksander Ragulin (USSR 1961-69)
Forward: Anatoli Firsov (USSR 1964-69).