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.

We'll play well in Canadian rinks, better in Moscow
By Bobby Orr
Source: The Toronto Sun Ė September 2, 1972

Team 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 some time.

But 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.

Don't 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.

I 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.

I 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 tiring.

But the Czechs beat them for the world championship earlier this year and I understand the Russian goaltending in that final wasn't the best.

Team 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.

This 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.

What 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!

I 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.

When 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.