Orr's predictions a little closer than most experts
The following article was written by none other than Bobby Orr himself for the Toronto Sun in 1972. Like 98% of articles and predictions, Orr expected the Soviets would fail to be a worthy opponent for Team Canada, but he did offer more respect for the enemy than most.
play well in Canadian rinks, better in Moscow
Canada has just too much firepower for the Russians. The first four
games in Canada could be close because the Russians are always in top
condition, have excellent discipline and will have played together for
by the end of September, the Canadian team will be in top shape and the
people in Moscow will see a tremendous display of power. I honestly
can't see the Russians winning one game in the series.
get me wrong. I know the Russians shouldn't be treated lightly. I don't
know of any player on Team Canada who thinks the series is a lark. But
condition, checking, excellent skating and position play will only take
the Russians so far.
haven't seen them play for some time, but I doubt if their goalies have
ever had to face shots like those of Dennis Hull and Yvan Cournoyer.
played against them seven years ago as a junior and we lost at that time
3-2, as I recall. I was impressed then with their physical condition.
They could go on skating at top speed all night, never apparently
the Czechs beat them for the world championship earlier this year and I
understand the Russian goaltending in that final wasn't the best.
Canada just doesnít have a weakness. Look at the lineup Ė the
strongest hockey team ever assembled to play as a unit in more than just
one game. And All-Star teams never
have a chance to practice together.
team will go into the first game after three weeks of hard practice.
Harrv Sinden is really pushing them, which is the way it should be.
All of us have been looking forward to this series for some time. Thatís why I tested my knee earlier than I originally planned.
the heck, if I'm really going to give it a shot, I must start early. And
I want to play against the Russians in Moscow!
think the first four games in Canada could be close. But if the
goaltending of the Russians is not the best , Canada could pile up big
scores. Even the best goalies have trouble with chaps like Phil
Esposito, Vic Hadfield, Frank Mahovlich, Rod Gilbert, and Stan Mikita.
Wait until the Russians see Espo parked in front of the net. Heíll
drive them mad.
the series shifts to Moscow, despite the larger Russian ice surface,
Team Canada will be in top condition. Thatís why I think we will win
all four by bigger scores.
I hope Iím a part of that effort Ė and I fully expect to be there.