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Today in Hockey History: Team USA Coach Herb Brooks Born

Herb Brooks

Hockey is finally back, but we at Last Word on Hockey are still going to look back at each date’s historical significance to the game. We’ll remember the moments that shaped the sport of hockey that happened on this day. Here’s our look at this date in hockey history for August 5th, featuring Herb Brooks.

Today in Hockey History

Herb Brooks Born in Minnesota

1937: The coach of the “Miracle on Ice” squad of American college players in born in St. Paul, Minn. He played college hockey for the University of Minnesota before returning as a coach in 1972. Brooks becomes coach the 1980 United States Olympic team in Lake Placid, N.Y. He was the last player cut from the 1960 squad that played in Squaw Valley, Calif.

Brooks leads the Americans to a 4-0-1 record and they upset the high-powered USSR team, 4-3. The U.S. completes its shocking run at the gold medal with a 4-2 victory over Finland. He became the New York Rangers coach in 1981 and also coached the Minnesota North Stars, New Jersey Devils and Pittsburgh Penguins. Brooks goes 219-219-66, but tragically dies in an auto accident in 2003. He’s posthumously inducted into the Hockey Hall of Fame in 2006.

Other Notable Events

1964: The great Art Ross passes away at the age of 79 in Medford, Mass. He played defence with the Montreal Wanderers but is known for his 30 seasons with the Boston Bruins. Ross was the first coach and general manager of the Bruins in 1924 and serves as general manager until 1954. He came up with a new style of net and a redesigned puck. The Art Ross Trophy for the league’s leading scorer is created in 1947.

1977: Leo Boivin becomes the St. Louis Blues head coach for the second time. The Hall of Famer replaces Emile Francis behind the bench. St. Louis fires Boivin after 54 games in charge and placing fourth in the Smythe Division.

1991: Detroit signs Ray Sheppard to a contract from the Rangers. He scores at least 30 goals in four full seasons with the Red Wings.

1996: The San Jose Sharks sign veteran forward Bernie Nicholls. He played the previous season with the Chicago Blackhawks.

1997: The Vancouver Canucks sign veteran goalie Arturs Irbe from the Dallas Stars. Irbe spends only one season with the Canucks as he heads to the Carolina Hurricanes afterwards.

Happy Birthday to You

1959: Anton Stastny

1976: Jeff Friesen

1980: Mark Bell

1981: David Clarke

1988: Jamie McGinn; Dale Weise

1996: Anders Bjork

Main Photo

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