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November 24, 2014

Soviet Hockey Legend Viktor Tikhonov Passes Away


Sad news out of Russian today as legendary Russian hockey coach Viktor Tikhonov passed away. He was 84.



Tikhonov is the most decorated coach in Russian hockey history. He guided the Soviet Union/CIS team to Olympic gold in 1984, 1988 and 1992, and the Canada Cup in ’81. He also won eight world championship gold medals and 13 consecutive Soviet titles as the head coach of CSKA Moscow (from 1978 to 1989).

He may best be known, at least in North America, for one of the few games he lost - The Miracle On Ice. Tikhonov's odd decision to pull goalkeeper Vladislav Tretiak after the first period in that game was the turning point in a game that is regarded by many as the greatest sporting event in American history.

Tikhonov also played right wing for 15 years in the Soviet elite league, winning three championships with VVS and one with Moscow Dynamo.

He was inducted into the International Hockey Hall of Fame in 1989, but, in a great oversight, has yet to be so honored by the Hockey Hall of Fame.

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