Trial On Ice: An Oral History of the 1972 Summit Series In September, 1972, Canada went to war. It started as a friendly cultural exchange intended to signal a thawing of East-West relations and firmly establish Canada as the world’s true hockey superpower. At its beginning, few saw the Summit Series as anything more than a working vacation for Canada's hockey pros. Everyone, including the Soviets, agreed on a few likely outcomes: Phil Esposito and the boys would politely embarrass the Communists; the Soviets, dominant in international hockey for a decade, would treat it as a learning experience; diplomats would tout the matches as a kind of cultural exchange that could thaw the Cold War.
But the cream of the professional crop stumbled badly, and the eight-game series exploded into a battle that Canadians feared they might very well lose. Then the tide magically turned, and today the victors are remembered as national heroes.
In dozens of interviews, the figures from Canada and the Soviet Union who planned and played it give a minute-by-minute account of how the 1972 Summit Series unfolded.
Included in this interactive book are video and audio interviews, dozens of game photos and candid images showing the players relaxing out of the public eye. Also included are articles from The Globe and Mail’s 1972 archives, plus current columns and editorials looking back at the series.