Vladimir Shadrin scores the final goal for the Soviet team in Vancouver, on Sept. 8, 1972, during Canada–USSR Summit Series hockey action. Team USSR took the victory in a 5–3 win over Canada. (The Canadian Press)

By George Da Silva – National Teams of Ice Hockey

Watching their Canadian heroes blow a pair of two-goal leads and having to settle for a 4-4 tie in Game 3 of the Summit Series in Winnipeg did not set well with Team Canada fans. Game 4 at Pacific Coliseum in Vancouver on Sept. 8, 1972, wound up making them even unhappier.

Injuries cost Canada both members of one of its best defensive pairs, as Guy Lapointe and Serge Savard of the Montreal Canadiens sat out. Even more costly was a pair of early penalties to Bill Goldsworthy, who had been inserted into the lineup to add energy. He was called for cross-checking at 1:24 and elbowing at 5:58 — and Boris Mikhailov capitalized on both power plays to give the Soviets a 2-0 lead after one period.

To say this wasn’t the start Team Canada had envisioned would be putting it mildly.

Game 4 @ Vancouver, Canada
September 8th, 1972


Vancouver fans booed Team Canada off the ice after a 5-3 loss to the Soviet Union in Game 4 of the Summit Series, triggering an emotional postgame outburst from Phil Esposito.

First Period: 1, USSR, Mikhailov 2 (Lutchenko, Petrov), 2:01 (pp). 2, USSR, Mikhailov 3 (Lutchenko, Petrov) 7:29 (pp).

Second Period: 3, Canada, Perreault 1, 5:37. 4, USSR, Blinov 1 (Petrov, Mikhailov), 6:34. 5, USSR, Vikulov 1 (Kharlamov, Maltsev), 13:52.

Third Period: 6, Canada, Goldsworthy 1, (P. Esposito, Bergman), 6.54. 7. USSR, Shadrin 1 (Yakushev, Vasiliev), 11:05. 8, Canada, D. Hull 1 (P. Esposito), 19:38.

Shots on Goal: Soviet Union 11-14-6–31. Canada 10-8-23–41.

Goalies: Soviet Union, Tretiak 2-1-1 (41 shots on goal, 38 saves). Canada, Dryden 0-2-0 (31-26).

Attendance: 15,570