If you look deeper into the outcome of any hockey game, there is a lot to tell about each team: What they need to work on, how they failed to win, or what strategy the team used to win. Some coaches or even players sometimes say it’s not all about winning. They are partially right, but when you are building the skill of the team winning isn’t the top priority. Although, when the skill is built, the tournament is set, and when the whistle is blown, all the other ingredients start to take over. The main goal is to win, to apply the built up skill that you have practiced for months to frazzle your opponents. There is no time for having fun when you’re in a war. You have to put everything on the line, life included, to fight and WIN!
It takes a lot to win or to become a winner. Determination, skill, spirit, and belief, are the four main factors found in every Stanley Cup champion. A few teams have used these traits and are now legendary such as the following: 1980 USA Olympic team, 2012 LA Kings, Alaska Aces, 2013 Pee-wee tier 3 champions Fairbanks Knights. Miracle teams as you would call them, the ones who were the expected to win like The Soviet Union, NJ Devils, Kalamazoo Wings, and AHA Comets Vandenbos. They were the almighty teams expected to rein above all others in the tournament.
On one night at Lake Placid in 1980 one game changed the hockey world forever. It was known as “The Miracle on Ice,” where the underdog USA Olympic team made up of college kids faced the undefeated Soviet Union. The Soviet Union team was comprised of players who have been together for up to 15 years, and before Lake Placid had beat the NHL All-stars 6-0. Because intimidation was at its highest, it was believed that no team could beat the Soviets. So here came this college team that had been losing throughout the year to many weak teams, then went on and faced the best hockey team on earth. Who do you think would win this game? Although this is hockey, anything is possible. The USA team had all four traits plus several more. They took their game and shoved it back in the Soviets’ face. They knew how to win, how to fight, and how to score. They put all effort in and changed the hockey world forever.
To become a team such as Miracle USA, you have to build the following traits: Going to the gym, working on weaknesses at the rink, and getting a mindset to play like champions. Not everything is about skill; the college kids from Team USA had no skill compared to the Soviets. They had the traits that their opponents did not, and they did the impossible in beating the world’s best team to become winners.