IHLC Classics: Unelmafinaali

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to commemorate Finland’s centennial as a nation, we look back on just the second World Championship for the Leijonat in history, their 2011 triumph over rival Sweden, considered by Finns to be the “unelmafinaali” – the dream final.

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finland-11 Finland 6-1 Sweden sweden-11
World Championship Gold Medal Game
Orange Aréna, Bratislava slovakia-11
Sunday, May 15, 2011

Finland captured just their second ever World Championship Gold Medal in dominant fashion against their cross-border rivals Sweden, crushing Tre Kronor 6-1 on goals from six different scorers to win their first Gold since 1995, and unify Gold with the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: “Henderson Has Scored For Canada!”

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the 1972 Summit Series finale, we look back on perhaps the most influential goal in international hockey history, Paul Henderson’s series-winning tally past Vladislav Tretyak.

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canada1965-11 Canada 6-5 Soviet Union ussr-11
Summit Series, Game 8
Luzhniki Palace Of Sports, Moscow ussr-11
Thursday, September 28, 1972

Both Canada and the Soviet Union had pushed each other to their limit in this grueling eight-game Summit Series, heading into the decisive eighth and final game in Moscow, the series tied at 3-3-1. Each team knew the ins-and-outs of each other’s game, and were completely prepared to avoid any surprises.

That is, until the final minute of the game – when Paul Henderson pounced on a rare Vladislav Tretyak rebound to score what was touted “The Goal Of The Century,” winning the epic Summit Series, and the International Hockey Lineal Championship, for Canada.
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IHLC Classics: Gretzky To Lemieux

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to commemorate the 30th anniversary of the 1987 Canada Cup, we highlight the third game of the Cup finals, one of the most historic showdowns between the Soviet Union and Canada in history.

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canada1965-11 Canada 6-5 Soviet Union ussr-11
Canada Cup Final, Game 3
Copps Coliseum, Hamilton canada1965-11
Tuesday, September 15, 1987

In a series jam-packed with dramatic play on the ice and political tension felt off it, it was only appropriate that the finale to the 1987 Canada Cup end, for the third consecutive game, with a nail-biting 6-5 win.

And for the second time in three nights, on the the winning goal, it was Gretzky to Lemieux, to cap what many argue is the best series in international hockey history, winning Canada the Cup on home ice and retaining the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: The Red Army Shocks The World

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to commemorate the 45th anniversary of the 1972 Summit Series, we feature the opening game of the tournament, a stunning Soviet victory in Montréal.

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ussr-11 Soviet Union 7-3 Canada canada1965-11
Summit Series, Game 1
Forum de Montréal, Montréal canada1965-11
Saturday, September 2, 1972

After all the opening spectacle died down, all the commemorative pennants were handed out, Canadian Prime Minister Pierre Trudeau dropped the puck and the national anthems were sung, hockey fans throughout Canada (and the Western world) were expecting Team Canada, a collective NHL all-star team boasting the likes of Phil Esposito, Frank Mahovlich and Ken Dryden, to put a drubbing on the Soviet team, made up of unheard “amateur” players who played hockey only as part of their army or police service. This was to be an easy sweep for Team Canada, to show the world once and for all who truly owns the game.

Oh, how wrong Canada was. The Soviets were for real, and they proved it with a drubbing of their own, to take Game 1 of the Summit Series, along with the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: The Impossible Dream Comes True

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to celebrate Independence Day in the United States, we feature the finale of the 1980 Lake Placid Games, Team USA’s post-Miracle victory to clinch Olympic Gold on home ice.

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usa-11 United States 4-2 Finland finland-11
Olympic Medal Round
Olympic Fieldhouse, Lake Placid usa-11
Sunday, February 24, 1980

Team USA’s ascension to the top of the hockey world in 1980 was actually not “The Miracle on Ice.” While it was the Miracle that stunned the world, it was their victory two days later where, as legendary announcer Al Michaels called it, “the impossible dream comes true” – the Americans locked up Olympic Gold for only the second time in history, triumphing 4-2 over Finland to win the tournament and capture the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: Canada Makes It Two In Torino

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to celebrate Canada’s 150th birthday, we shine a light on Canada’s 2006 women’s Olympic Gold victory, Canada’s second of four (and counting) Olympic titles.

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canada1965-11 Canada 4-1 Sweden sweden-11
Olympic Gold Medal Game
Palasport Olimpico, Turin italy-11
Monday, February 20, 2006

It seemed only appropriate that fears of another repeat women’s Gold Medal Game between bitter rivals Canada and the U.S. would occur for a third straight Olympics – but thanks to the heroics of Sweden relegating the Americans to the bronze medal game, for the first time a new contender emerged.

But there would be no repeat heroics, as Canada pounded Tre Kronor 4-1 to win their second straight Olympic Gold Medal, and to cap off a perfect Olympics with the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: The Goodwill Games Final

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to celebrate Russia Day, we focus on one hockey’s most unique tournaments ever, and one of the Soviet Union’s final Gold Medal victories, at the 1990 Goodwill Games.


ussr-11 Soviet Union 4-3 United States usa-11 (SO)
Goodwill Games Gold Medal Game
Tacoma Dome, Tacoma usa-11
Sunday, August 5, 1990

In one of the more bazaar international hockey tournaments in history, the Soviet Union emerged with Gold from the only hockey ever played at the short-lived Goodwill Games, the Olympic alternative brainchild of billionaire Ted Turner, winning 4-3 in a shootout over the home team United States to unify Gold and International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: Lidström’s Golden Goal

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, to celebrate National Day (Sveriges nationaldag) in Sweden, we focus on Sweden’s second and most recent Olympic Gold Medal, won from rivals Finland at the 2006 Turin Games.

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sweden-11 Sweden 3-2 Finland finland-11
Olympic Gold Medal Game
Palasport Olimpico, Turin italy-11
Sunday, February 26, 2006

In Gold Medal Game befitting one the biggest rivalries in hockey, Sweden emerged from the 2006 Turin Olympiad with their second Olympic title, defeating border rivals Finland 3-2 to unify the Gold with the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: Sweden’s Unique Double

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, while the ongoing World Championships take a day off, we look back to the final of the 2006 Worlds, where Sweden made history by being the first team to win Olympic and World Championship Gold in the same year.

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sweden-11 Sweden 4-0 Czechia czech-11
World Championship Gold Medal Game
Arēna Rīga, Rīga latvia-11
Sunday, May 21, 2006

Sweden made international hockey history at the Arēna Rīga, dispatching Czechia in a dominating 4-0 victory to not only capture their eighth IIHF World Championship Gold Medal, but becoming the first team in history to win Olympic and World Championship Gold in the same year, a feat made even more sweeter by retaining the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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IHLC Classics: “Tupu, Hupu & Lupu” Golden For Finland

From time to time, TheIHLC.com will feature detailed recaps and boxscores of some of the most legendary games in international hockey history, considered to be “IHLC Classics.” Today, in honour of Finnish Independence Day, we look back at the 1995 World Championships Gold Medal Game, the long overdue first title for the Leijonat, over their Swedish rivals on Swedish ice.

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finland-11 Finland 4-1 Sweden sweden-11
World Championship Gold Medal Game
Stockholm Globe Arena, Stockholm sweden-11
Sunday, May 7, 1995

After fifty plus years of misery on the international hockey stage, it was a trio of youngsters in their early twenties that finally managed to put the Leijonat atop the world’s stage, defeating their national rivals Sweden 4-1 in the Gold Medal Game to capture the 1995 championship, as well as the International Hockey Lineal Championship.
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