111121612 Vol. 18, No. 2 Saturday, September 2, 2012 Hudson, St. Lazare, Senneville, Ste-Anne-de-Bellevue, Baie d'Urfe, Beaconsfield, Chateauguay, Kirkland, Pte. Claire, Pierrefonds, D.D.O., Dorval, Lachine, NDG, CSL, Ville St-Laurent, Mtl-West, Hampstead, Westmount, Montreal, Lasalle, Verdun, Laval
Yvon Cournoyer offers to play for the Russians
Once the most corrupt man in Hockey, Alan Eagleson has ticked off some of the greatest players their generation once more. "The Eagle" is being shut out of 40th anniversary celebrations of the great Canada- Soviet Series of '72.
A small measure of justice. "Some guys want him there, some guys don't want him there," says the more prestigious member of the flock, Yvan "The Roadrunner" Cournoyer of the NHLPA's long-ago Cheatin' Eagle . "He said he's gonna have a bottle of champagne and stay at home? I think we paid his bottle of champagne...so he's gonna have a free bottle." In an interview for CJAD's Andrew Carter Morning Show and our website www.cjad.com, Cournoyer told me he still gets goose bumps every time he sees Henderson's game-winning goal. "It's been 40 years, but we became very close. That was a lot of pressure," the Hockey Hall of Famer says in one of his classic understatements. "I won 10 Stanley Cups,but people still want to talk about where they were at that time." Cournoyer was on the ice, his shift over, but his lungs bursting for oxygen in the Moscow mayhem. Henderson bellowed for a winger to get off. Peter Mahovlich was closer to the Canada bench so the Roadrunner found one more burst. I was stuck in Science Class at BishopWhelan High while most of the rest of the school had been freed up to watch history unfold in black and white in the school gym. "I almost went off the ice because i was so exhausted, but Pete was near the bench...Paul Henderson called him to get off. I saw Henderson coming on and tried to get him the puck." "When he came in my arms I said'We did it!We did it!' and I felt the pressure off my shoulders." Live wire Dennis Hull was Yvan's locker stall neighbour in the dressing room and later asked Cournoyer if he was like that after winning the Stanley cup. "I told him 'You don't know?' Cournoyer chuckles more in jest than unabashed
Yvon Cournoyer won 10 Stanly Cups with the Montreal Canadiens
arrogance. Cournoyer remains a fierce competitor. He's a 9 handicap and regularly shoots 80- 85. He admits being fearful of the unknown facing the Soviet squad and goalie VladislavTretiak, who he says would have been a fine NHL goalie had the Iron Curtain and KGB not blocked him from honouring Serge Savard's draft selection of 1983. It was the one and only time the Canadiens or any NHL team, drafted a 31-
year old netminder. Cournoyer has a precious keepsake of the series, but it does not date all the way back to 1972. "We went back 25 years and since I'd told the Russians my name was 'Ivan' and I'd play for them, they gave me a #12 with my name on the back." CCCP, not CH on the front of course. CJAD and Sports Illustrated's Mike Farber likes Marc Bergevin's latest hire John Madden. He'll find hard-nosed players like the former Devils and Hawks Stanley Cup champs. Former Habs defenseman Petr Svoboda braces us all for the inevitable Lockout. "I'm not optimistic," says the veteran d-man turned show-me-the-money man. "I've been an agent for 12 years, but I've gone thru it myself. Players train to play, so I think a lot of guys will try to play somewhere else if it goes on too long." If players don't play, agents don't get paid. "Absolutely...you work for nothing. It's part of the system and we're just hoping for the best." Of course, one of his clients is Jaromir Jagr, who owns his own team back home in the Czech Republic. "So I think he's gonna start playing for his team." Could really have been in bleu, blanc, rouge this season? "It was his dream to play for the Montreal Canadiens, but I guess Marc and Rick Dudley and all those guys want to go with younger players. I respect that. They got a pretty good young core. Jags was dreaming about playing here but unfortunately it did not work out." Svoboda also approves of efforts to form a junior hockey union.
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