One of the Greatest Sports Upsets and Sports Calls Wrapped into a Single Moment

Miracle on Ice

Miracle on Ice” was a no-brainer for the initial Dr Cheese t-shirt collection.  

Search “greatest sports upsets” and combine that search with “greatest sports calls.” “Do you believe in miracles?!” tops the list every time.  The call from the 1980 Olympics and the historic moment, truly transcended sports.

The event was a sports upset of epic proportions.  The 1980 USA Olympic hockey team was a group of amateur college players while the Soviet team was a dynasty.  The previous year the Soviet team defeated an NHL all-star team in a three-game series including a 6-0 route in the third game. Furthermore, the Soviets had crushed the Americans 10-3 just two weeks prior to the start of the Olympic Games.  

Now add in the cultural undertones of the day, with the Cold War at its peak since the Cuban Missile Crisis, and the Iran Hostage Crisis stretching beyond 100 days. The stage was set. Team USA was a huge underdog, and one of the biggest upset in sports history played out on the ice in Lake Placid.

An upset of this nature, that transcended sports and lifted a nation, needed a call to match the upset.  Fortunately, Al Michaels hit the mark. If he would have shouted, “USA Wins!!, USA Wins!!”, it still would have been memorable and emotional.  But the question, along with the exclamation in one call, was unique and perfect for the moment.  

Team USA taking the Soviets down was nothing short of miraculous given the circumstances.  Almost four decades later, the call and the question it raises, continues to touch all of us.  We pray for miracles in real life as well as on the playing field.  Of course, ‘the miracle’ does not happen all of the time or even most of the time.  But sometimes, when the timing is just right, “Yes!!” , miracles do happen.  David does beat Goliath. And when he does, it only makes sense to savor, commemorate and the wear the moment.