ROCHESTER, NY - The Red Wings are reliving the miracle again in 2016. This years Relive the Miracle Night set for Friday, August 19 presented by All-American Home Care, Democrat & Chronicle and Bill Gray's Regional Iceplex features an autograph appearance from Mike Eruzione -- captain of Team USA in 1980 and the one who netted the game-winning goal vs. the Soviet Union sending the Americans to the gold medal game. Eruzione will be joined in Rochester by fellow Olympic teammates Neal Broten, Dave Christian and Mike Ramsey.
The Wings and Buffalo Bisons will wear special Team USA jerseys that night that will be auctioned off during the game to benefit the Red Wings Community Foundation. The four Olympians will sign autographs from 6-6:45 p.m. and again from 7:15-8 p.m. They will also shoot first pitches prior to the 7:05 p.m. first pitch against the Buffalo Bisons. After the game, the members of Team USA will do an on-field interview for the crowd prior to a fireworks show set to music from 1980!
Throughout the game clips from Team USA's dramatic win over the Soviets will be shown on the video board. More details of the night to follow.
THE JERSEYS - Wings in white, Buffalo in blue...
MEET THE GUYS
The captain of the 1980 hockey team, Eruzione is the man who scored the goal that beat the Russians. Eruzione came to the 1980 team from the Toledo Goaldiggers of the International Hockey League, a team he joined after playing four years at Boston University. While at BU, he played on four ECAC champions and later, with the Goaldiggers, he was the IHL American Rookie of the Year. Eruzione captained the 1980 US ice hockey team, but after the Olympics, retired from hockey and never played in the NHL. He became a television analyst and motivational speaker. In 2002, he lit the Olympic Flame at the Opening Ceremony, accompanied by his 1980 hockey teammates.
Neal Broten was only a sophomore at the University of Minnesota when he played for the 1980 Olympic team. Minnesota and Olympic coach, Herb Brooks, called Broten, "The best freshman to ever play for the Gophers" - quite an accolade in view of their hockey tradition. After the Olympics, Broten played only one more year of college hockey but in that year he was named first-team All-America, all-NCAA Tournament, and was the first winner of the Hobey Baker Trophy ice hockey's equivalent of the Heisman Trophy After that year, Broten signed with the Minnesota North Stars and had a great rookie year. His 98-point season was the third highest total ever by an NHL rookie and, in addition, he set an NHL record for the most goals scored by an American-born player with 38. Broten later scored 105 points in the 1986-97 season. He had a long NHL career, playing thru 1997, with the North Stars thru 1993, and finishing his career with the Dallas Stars, New Jersey Devils, and Los Angeles Kings. He played in two NHL All-Star Games (1983, 1986), and finished his career with 289 goals and 923 points.
As the son of 1960 gold medalist, Bill Christian, the nephew of 1960 gold medalist, Roger Christian, and the nephew of 1956 silver medalist, Gordon Christian, Dave Christian grew up in a very hockey oriented environment. After making all-state in high school - where he also played football, baseball, and track - he went to the University of North Dakota, where he played two years at right wing. He left college right after the Olympics to play with the Winnipeg Jets. Christian made a spectacular start to his NHL career, scoring after just seven seconds of his debut and in his first two full seasons in the NHL, he scored 71 and 76 points, good performances considering the Jets were a weak team in both of those years. Christian played in the NHL thru 1994, playing with the Jets, the Washington Capitals, Boston Bruins, St. Louis Blues, and Chicago Blackhawks. He had career marks of 340 goals and 773 points and played in the NHL All-Star game in 1991.
In high school, Mike Ramsey was heavily recruited as a hockey player, but he also played a pretty fair game of tennis. He was third in the Minnesota state championships in tennis, and seventh in the Midwest 16-and-under tournament. But his size, 6-3 (1.90) and 190 lbs. (86 kg.), made him a natural defenseman and he accepted a hockey scholarship to the University of Minnesota. However, after his freshman year at Minnesota, he joined the Olympic team, and after the Olympics, he turned pro with the Buffalo Sabres of the NHL. Ramsey has been one of the best pros of the 1980 Olympians and had the longest NHL career from that team. He played thru the 1996-97 season in the NHL, mostly with the Sabres. He played in the NHL All-Star game four times.
This goal was named the "greatest highlight" of all time by ESPN's SportsCenter in 2008!
Over 10,000 fans showed up last August as the Wings celebrated the 35th anniversary of the Miracle on Ice with Olympians John Harrington, Ken Morrow and Ramsey on hand. Check out some coverage of last year's Miracle on Ice Night which gained national media attention!