How Live-Tweeting the 'Miracle on Ice' Would Look in 2020

February 19, 2020 - 8:53 pm

(Just about 40 years ago the United States men's hockey team beat the Soviet Union in one of the greatest upsets in sports history. The game, however, couldn't be seen on live television, having to be viewed on tape delay. To think the result and particulars of a game of that magnitude weren't delivered to the general public until hours after it finished is almost unthinkable. That's why we started thinking about what would happen if this game was played in this day and age. In particular, what would Twitter look like as the "Miracle on Ice" unfolded? Matt Kalman and Ken Laird of "The Skate Podcast" took their best shot at reenacting how social media might look if we moved 1980 to 2020. The pair watched the game and fired off Tweets as it took place. Enjoy ...)


@KenLairdWEEI - Medal round game coming up, the mighty Soviet Union again the Two United States of America, Minnesota and Massachusetts

@MattKalman - 1,000-to-1 odds. Not sure why I’m even watching this game.

@KenLairdWEEI - Hope the Americans do better than that 10-3 loss 13 days ago at MSG. I gave up tickets I had to see American Gigolo to stay home & watch this.

@MattKalman - It might take the US using Al Michael’s point collar to stab someone to score in this one, never mind making it competitive.

@KenLairdWEEI - Not sure what’s a worse look from Al Michaels at the start of the telecast, that horrible white collar or that ‘blue line vs. clothes line’ joke

@MattKalman - Herb Brooks looks like an older Kurt Russell.

@KenLairdWEEI - Viktor Tikhonov’s eyebrows have started the game offsides. And understated hair product.

@MattKalman - Jim Craig looks dialed in early in net.

@KenLairdWEEI - US Forward combinations look like they stay:

24 McClanahan - 10 Johnson- 8 Silk

21 Eruzione - 9 Broten - 11 Christoff

25 Schneider - 16 Pavelich - 28 Harrington

27 Verchota - 15 Wells - 19 Strobel

@MattKalman - Great block by Broten to make sure that long shift in the U.S. zone didn’t cost them. 

@MattKalman - What a play from Baker to Verchota. Imagine if the U.S. had scored there after spending so much time in its own zone.

@MattKalman - Wow, a U.S. power play after the Americans were again struggling to get out of the defensive zone. Mikhailov to the box.

@MattKalman - Johnson just walked down the middle. Are the Soviets taking the U.S. power play lightly?

@MattKalman - Power play didn’t score but at least shifted a little momentum the U.S. way.

@MattKalman - Pavelich with a chance in front. The U.S. is actually matching the Soviets scoring chance for scoring chance.

@MattKalman - Craig has had to be in the zone so far and he’s done it, making up for too many U.S. giveaways.

@KenLairdWEEI - Haven’t checked Corsi yet but the US is getting worked. Craig is keeping them in it.

@MattKalman - Sounds like there’s about 5 people chanting U-S-A up there. U-S-S-R just doesn’t have the same ring.

@MattKalman - Terrible giveaway at the blue line by Schneider. Kasatonov takes advantage and blasts one past Craig from the right point. 1-0 USSR.

@KenLairdWEEI - Schneider lost it trying to carry out of his own zone, leads to a Russian goal and 1-0 lead. Did the refs miss a slash on his hands? Still, bad goal allowed by Craig, far too upright in his net, deflected or not. Looks like Krutov will get credit.

@MattKalman - Krutov will have to be credited with the goal on a tip-in. You knew the U.S. giveaways were going to hurt them sooner or later.

@MattKalman - Al Michaels just said the crowd is quiet. I think the U.S. has to get them out of their seats here, use the crowd as a seventh man.

@MattKalman - I hope someone is working on technology that will make contrast on TVs better for watching hockey.

@KenLairdWEEI - Thanks to ABC for not showing the game clock. I think we’re still in the 1st period but can’t be sure.

@MattKalman - What a blast by Schneider! If Tretiak’s going to give up goals like that the U.S. will have a chance. From the top of the left circle inside the far post. 1-1

@KenLairdWEEI - Wow, Schneider beats Tretiak with a bomb from the LW circle on the fly… they better let him keep that puck.

@MattKalman - Best Craig save of the game so far off that last faceoff. Kharlamov with the blast, Craig gloves it and falls on his rear end.

@KenLairdWEEI - Sneaky good glove save by Craig off a Soviet faceoff win.

@MattKalman - Oh, that’s a tough one to take. Makarov was trying to pass and the puck came back to him for a wrister pass Craig off the rush. Ruskies lead 2-1.

@KenLairdWEEI - 2-1 Red team. Not Craig’s fault here, 2-on-2 rush and an unfortunate bounce off Ken Morrow’s skates right back to Makarov.

@MattKalman - Craig makes up for that last goal with two great saves. Still a one-goal Russian lead.

@MattKalman - No way! Johnson scores with 1 second left to tie this thing 2-2. Just getting to the intermission tied feels like a victory for the U.S.

@KenLairdWEEI - Wow, Mark Johnson scores on a careless long rebound allowed by Tretiak! With less than a second to go. CCCP? More like ZZZP, lazy by Pervukhin and Bilyaletdinov getting back to cover that rebound. I guess it is 2 a.m. in Moscow.

@MattKalman - Now they’re debating whether the goal counts. Let’s hope the Soviets aren’t pulling any dirty tricks.

@MattKalman - It’s a good goal! Definitely 2-2, but the Soviets had already gone to the dressing room. Hope they didn’t already light their cigarettes.

@KenLairdWEEI - Soviets refused to come back on the ice for the final second of the frame? Arrogant. 

@MattKalman - Now the crowd is into this thing as they drop the puck to run off the last second.

@KenLairdWEEI - This feels like more than a game now, the crowd is amped


@MattKalman - Holy hell! The Soviets have switched their goalie. After two goals allowed? Myshkin in net, Tretiak on the bench. Next stop, Siberia?

@KenLairdWEEI - Myshkin is in the net for the Soviets??! Incredible overreaction by Tikhonov, no? That Johnson goal end of the first has rattled him. This could be one of the dumbest coaching moves in sports history.

@MattKalman - Just when it looked like the U.S. had momentum, Harrington takes a penalty. Soviet power play coming up.

@KenLairdWEEI - Holding call on Harrington. Not much debate there.

@MattKalman - Soviets not having much luck getting inside against U.S. PK.

@KenLairdWEEI - McClanahan nice block at the point on the PK

@MattKalman - So much for that. Maltsev with the breakaway after a great exchange at center ice and he beats Craig inside the left post. 3-2 USSR, you don’t know how lucky you are, boy.

@KenLairdWEEI - Baker turns it over in the neutral zone, and Maltsev makes the US pay on a breakaway the other way. Dave Christian also caught flat-footed. 3-2 Soviets as America trails for the third time.

@KenLairdWEEI - “USA” chants kick back in. Nice job from the crowd.

@MattKalman - McClanahan with a partial break and Myshkin makes the save on the best U.S. chance of the period so far.

@KenLairdWEEI - Silk had a chance in the slot but bricked it high and wide.

@MattKalman - Al Michaels keeps introducing his partner as “former Montreal goalie” Ken Dryden, as if there’s another Ken Dryden.

@KenLairdWEEI - Broten another great US chance off a Christian drop pass, ripped wide.

@MattKalman - Baker’s getting held and hooked by Skvortsov, no call.

@KenLairdWEEI - Michaels keeps pronouncing Fetisov “FETT-ih-soff”. Pretty sure it’s Fuh-TEE-sov. Oh well.

@MattKalman - Pace of play has slowed here.

@MattKalman - Harrington missed the net on the breakaway. Might wind up regretting that one.

@KenLairdWEEI - Oh, Harrington! Breakaway from center red and another missed net.

@MattKalman - Ramsey with some intimidation tactics on Petrov after the whistle. Doubt any Soviet player gets scared though considering what their lives are like.

@KenLairdWEEI - Ramsey got drafted by Buffalo? Boy does that suck for him. Although I’ve heard good things about The Anchor Bar there.

@MattKalman - Penalty on Ramsey? Not sure about that call. Big PK coming up.

@KenLairdWEEI - Great PK chance for the US, Schneider couldn’t bury the 2-on-1 setup from Johnson. Puck may have been bouncing on feed.

@MattKalman - Well I hesitate to call that a penalty kill, more like a penalty survival. But U.S. still down just one.

@MattKalman - Some pushing and shoving after the whistle. Soviets maybe getting a little frustrated.

@KenLairdWEEI - This game has gotten chippy with lots of whistles. Probably suits Coach Brooks just fine.

@MattKalman - No matter what happens in this game Craig has proven himself a great goalie. Pro career ahead.

@MattKalman - Guess Craig heard me. Two-pad-stack save there to keep this a one-goal game.

@MattKalman - Hard to believe U.S. lost 10-3 to these same Soviets earlier this month.

@MattKalman - Uh oh, Craig is down. Krutov and Morrow crashed into him. Now he’s up, he’ll stay in.

@KenLairdWEEI - Did Craig get pushed back into the post? Oh, no, it was a head butt from Krutov after Morrow buried him on a crosscheck. Lucky Craig is ok.

@MattKalman - They just showed Jamie Farr in the crowd. Didn’t recognize him without wearing a dress.

@MattKalman - Pavelich to Schneider but the shot goes wide. Imagine if the U.S. got a late goal to tie the score for the second straight period.

@MattKalman - Well no such luck. U.S. goes to the second intermission down 3-2.

@KenLairdWEEI - 3-2 Soviets headed to the 3rd. America has a chance. I’ve always said great moments are born from great opportunity.


@MattKalman - Not much happening early in this period. U.S. has to turn up the intensity. Haven’t had a shot on net in a while.

@MattKalman - Johnson got away with a hold on the forecheck. Big break for the U.S.

@MattKalman - Makarov couldn’t get the shot off there. Still a one-goal game.

@KenLairdWEEI - US lets Makarov get loose twice. Craig falls on the second chance. Obvious nerves by the Americans here.

@MattKalman - Krutov called for elbowing. Well if the U.S. can’t score here they’re toast.

@KenLairdWEEI - Penalty on the Russians! Elbowing? Looked like a slash on Broten. but oh well. Huge chance to get the equalizer

@MattKalman - Actually it was high-sticking with Broten carrying the puck. Dryden says it was a questionable call. Shut up, Canadian!

@KenLairdWEEI - Shut up, Dryden. Obvious call.

@MattKalman - Eruzione knocks the rebound of Ramsey’s shot wide.

@MattKalman - Power play has energized the U.S.

@MattKalman - Tied game! Power play winding down and Silk’s pass went off the Russian defenseman to Johnson for the tying goal.

@KenLairdWEEI - Tie Game!! On final rush of power play, Silky brought it into the zone and it came right to Johnson on the net drive. 3-3, are you kidding me? Pass went right thru Starikov’s legs.

@MattKalman - Sounds like the building is rocking.

@KenLairdWEEI - Lake Placid is bananas right now. Turn this game on if you haven’t yet.

@MattKalman - Craig with a save. He must be as worried as he’s ever been now that the game’s tied.

@MattKalman - Eruzione scores! What a shot from the high slot inside the left post. Just 1:21 after Johnson’s tying goal. 4-3 U-S-A! U-S-A.

@KenLairdWEEI - Eruzione!! Great forecheck pressure in corner by Harrington to set it up… and Eruzione used Pervukhin as a screen. 4-3 lead for America, I don’t believe it. 10 minutes until the unthinkable now.

@MattKalman - Wow Pervukhin screened his own goalie. Like Dryden just said, Eruzione scored a similar goal at MSG against the Russians a few weeks ago.

@MattKalman - Soviets know they won’t be able to go home if this score stands. What a frenzy near the U.S. net. A shot off the post and another that just went wide.

@KenLairdWEEI - Have to think the Russians underestimated America. They aren’t doing that anymore. Holy horse balls I can’t believe they have a chance to win this.

@MattKalman - Al Michaels just said the US hasn’t beaten the Soviets in any competition since 1960. 8:05 away from doing just that. It would be a surprise on ice for sure.

@KenLairdWEEI - Icing by Eruzione with 6:47 left. 

@KenLairdWEEI - Morrow gives up the body to block a shot. Great sacrifice.

@MattKalman - U.S. playing bend-but-don’t-break defense in their own zone. What a great job so far.

@KenLairdWEEI - “Play your game” Brooks is repeatedly saying on the US bench as the mic’s pic it up.

@MattKalman - Pucks in, pucks out. U.S. doing a great job whittling away the clock. 3:53 left in the third.

@KenLairdWEEI - Where is President Carter? Should be here for this.

@MattKalman - Wonder how many of these Ruskies are thinking about defecting if things don’t change in the next three minutes.

@MattKalman - Is Al Michaels going to count down the last 2:30 of this one? Calm down, Al.

@KenLairdWEEI - Russia ices it with 1:51 left. My heart is on the table right now.

@MattKalman - Russia looking for the stretch pass, a couple icings in a row here.

@MattKalman - One minute to go. It’d take a miracle for the Russians to tie it.

@KenLairdWEEI - One minute to history, boys. Will Tikhonov pull Myshkin or no? What is he doing? Maybe they've never trailed this late

@MattKalman - Petrov with the backhand wide.

@MattKalman - Petrov fires from the red line, Craig deflects it away. Less than 30 seconds left. Why am I tweeting in all this excitement?

@MattKalman - The crowd counts down the last three seconds and the U.S. mobs Craig. There’s a U.S. flag on the ice as well.

@MattKalman - Michaels with the call: “Do you believe in miracles, yes.” Wonder if anyone will remember that one.

@KenLairdWEEI - Chills. Great final call, Al, I’m sorry I ripped you earlier.

@MattKalman - What a win. U-S-A, U-S-A. We are the champions! … What, we have to face Finland next? Oh. After beating the Soviets that shouldn’t be a problem.

@KenLairdWEEI - Not sure who is the bigger hero, Jim Craig or Mike Eruzione. Absolute legends for life.

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