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Lethbridge Herald Newspaper Archives

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Lethbridge Herald, The (Newspaper) - December 28, 1974, Lethbridge, Alberta 12 THE LETHSRIDGE HERALD Saturday, Ovctmber 28, 1974 STAN FISCHLER Here, there and everywhere The future of the World Hockey Association will largely be determined by the manner in which it handles its problem franchises Chicago and Michigan and whether it can pump life back into the sagging San Diego attendance. In the Windy City, most observers acknowledge that it's only a matter of time before the Kaiser family drops its backing of the Cougars. Player coach Pat Stapleton reportedly is dis- gusted with ownership and has his skaters behind him, should any clash develop. Some people say Detroit can support two major league hockey teams but you can't prove it by the WHA Stags. They've drawn pitifully at Cobo Hall despite relatively weak competi- tion from the NHL Red Wings. The WHA would like to keep a club in Chicago and re-plant one in New York but in these recession depression times that's more easily said than done. Of course the young league has had problems before; and solved them. So, it would be foolish to doom the circuit out of hand. Still, some powerful remedies are needed if the WHA ex- pects to stay neck and neck with the mighty NHL. If Red Kelly fails to rally the Toronto Maple Leafs into a dynamic playoff contender this year it will prove what many of us have suspected; that he's 'way, 'way overrated as a .first- rate coach. Look at Kelly's NHL coaching pattern he's started off strong in each of his stints in Los Angeles, Pitt- sburgh and Toronto, and then tailed off terribly. There are many ways to measure the ineptitude of the NHL's Washington Capitals but the easiest of all is forward Tommy Williams. Last year Williams was fourth string centre on the WHA's New England Whalers. This year Tommy not only is a starter for Washington but became the first Capital to score two goals in a single game. I've said it before and I'll say it again; with few exceptions, the Boston hockey writers are a collection of cotton candy jour- nalists. I base this allegation on their chronic coddling of Bobby On and Phil Esposito, who constantly have abused out of town writers (this one included) over the years. Somehow, you never read about the Orr Esposito tirades in the Boston papers, because Orr has the Beantown press thoroughly bam- boozled. And a sad thing, too. The most recent Orr outburst was directed at Montreal Gazette writer Dick Chapman, one of the best in the business. When Chapman visited the Bruins dressing room on the Canadiens last visit to Boston, Orr ordered the Gazette writer out of the room. When Chapman asked why-, Orr shouted: "I don't need a reason I don't like you. Is that enough? Now get the bleep outta here." Chapman left, not because he wanted to but because Bobby Orr runs the Boston Bruins dressing room the Boston Bruins and quite possibly the National Hockey League! Collection of quotes better left unsaid Flying high Dan Ripley of San Jose broke an old Canadian indoor pole vault record when he cleared the bar at 17 feet six inches at the 10th annual Knights of Columbus Indoor Games at Saskatoon. The old record was a half an inch lower. Vikings must beat Rams, Steelers take on Oakland By MEL SUFRIN CP Sports Editor Unless you're a saint, you're bound to say some- thing sometime you later re- gret. Trouble is, if you're a prominent sports personality your quotes are likely to come back to haunt you. Billy Harris, coach ot Team Canada 74, for example. He must squirm a bit when soneone reminds him that, be- fore the hockey series with the Soviet Union, he told a re- porter it would be "the easiest assignment" he had ever had. He was referring to the fact that he had such stars as Bobby Hull, Gordie Howe, Paul Henderson and Pat Stapleton on his team of World Hockey Association players. But it wasn't an easy as- signment on the ice where Canada lost four games, tied three and won only one. Nor was it easy off the ice, what with arguments over offici- ating, disputed goals, reports that the Moscow hotel rooms of the Canadians were bugged, and even a Soviet threat to quit without finishing the series. The Canadian Press, in a year-end poll, asked sports writers and broadcasters to jot down some of the more in- teresting off-beat quotes of 1974. A fair number dealt with the Canada-Russia series. "This is a friendly said Harris. "We'll restore Canadian dignity in inter- national hockey. Win or lose, we'll make some friends for Canada. We'll show Europe some players with class and some classy hockey that has nothing to do with swinging sticks and taking cheap shots at the opposi- tion." Then there was 46-year-old Gordie Howe saying "I'm too old to be mean" before he proceeded to show the Soviets the sharpest pair of elbows in hockey. And Howe again, on the suggestion that the hotel rooms were bugged: "The only bugs I saw were the ones crawling around in the shower." Hockey provided a good share of the quotable quotes. There was Philadelphia Fly- ers' centre Bobby Clarke say .ing 69-year-old Clarence Campbell should retire as president of the National Hockey League because "none of the other big leagues have other old guys as their heads." Clarke later sent Campbell a letter of apology explaining that his remarks were made when he was angry and "not meant maliciously." Camp- bell accepted the apology "in good faith" and said "the in- cident is closed." There was Marshall John- ston, coach of California Seals, securely in last place in the Adams Division of the NHL, saying: "It's tough to get up for games against those expansion clubs." There was Montreal Cana- diens' centre Henri Richard, frustrated about the way he was being used, declaring: "Bowman est un in- a reference to coach Scotty Bowman. And there was Harold Bal- lard commenting acidly on the timid play of some of his Toronto Maple Leafs- "You could send Inge Ham- marstrom into the corner with six eggs in his pocket and he wouldn't break one of them." Canadian football also of- fered some gems. Ray Jauch, coach of Ed- monton Eskimos, asked about a reported injury to quarter- back Tom Wilkinson in the Western playoff: "Tom just pulled some fat in his back. He doesn't have any mus- cles." Wilkinson, accepting the award as the Canadian Foot- ball League's player of the year, took a similar line. Ex- plaining why he appeared in a blue tuxedo, he said: "In a black tuxedo I look like a pregnant penguin." Johnny Rauch. coach of To- ronto Argonauts, became something of a prophet when, after his club had blown a game on an intercepted half- back pass: "This may get me fired but I feel I made a good decision." Owner Bill Hodgson, frus- trated after Argos had lost three games on last-minute errors, got rid of Rauch. John F. Bassett, whose To- ronto Northmen became the Memphis Southmen when the World Football League was forced out of Canada by gov- ernment threats, had a some- what less prophetic offering. "We'll take on the National Football League head to he said. True, the Southmen have three Miami Warfield, Jim Kiick and Larry contract for next year but the WFL is no match for the NFL and there is some doubt the new league will survive. And then there was David Loeb, owner of Ottawa Rough Riders, after a particularly dull exhibition by his club: "Even I wouldn't want to watch them play." Outside of the major sports, perhaps the funniest comment was made by a softball player in Pembroke, Ont, who said during a game he just wasn't getting good wood with the new aluminum bats. ANDY CAPP GOOD NIGHT, SWELL PASTY 'IM TOREMEMSER V'E LIVES 'ERE Specialists in all types of Engines ENGINE REBUILDING CYLINDER BORING AND RESLEEVING CRANKSHAFT REGRINDING WISCONSIN ENGINE Sales and Service' Centre CUSTOM ENGINE PARTS LTD, 1605 3rd Avenue South Phono 328-S181 BLOOMINGTON. Minn. (AP) Minnesota Vikings, smarting from two previous Super Bowl losses, seek a third chance Sunday when they meet Los Angeles Rams for the National Football Conference championship. "Emotion is a very impor- tant part of the said Minnesota coach Bud Grant. I think the Rams and ourselves both know what we want and are emotionally prepared. "Teams like Buffalo and St. Louis appeared to be emotion- ally used up when they got to the playoffs." Minnesota suffered a 23-7 loss to Kansas City Chiefs in 1970 and lost 24-7 to Miami Dolphins last January in their second Super Bowl appearance for the National Football League cham- pionship. "We certainly didn't play our best football last year in the Super said Minnesota running back Chuck Foreman. "We'll be a lot better prepared if we make it again. Minnesota's last defeat, a 20-17 loss in Los Angeles Nov. 24, prompted a team meeting during which the club repeated its pre-season vow of a Super Bowl championship "After we lost to the Rams, the players got together and vowed to win six straight said Grant. "We've got four." Minnesota concluded its season with three impressive over New Orleans Saints, 23-10 over Atlanta Falcons and 3545 over Kansas City, before pasting NFC Eastern Division cham- pions St. Louis Cardinals, the NFC Eastern Division cham- pions, 30-14 in the divisional playoffs. "I really hope we can win a older who might not be around much said rookie linebacker Matt Blair. "Guys like Jim Marshall, Carl Eller and Roy Winston have been there twice and you never know how many more chances they'll get The Vikings have been pegg- ed a four-point favorite to re- tain the NFC title they won a year ago with a 27-10 victory in Dallas. Both teams arrived in Bloo- rnington Friday night and scheduled brief workouts in Metropolitan Stadium for to- day if field conditions permit. Melting temperatures in the mid-30s Friday could make the field soggy and force both teams to practice at the University of Minnesota. The Vikings practiced two days in Tulsa, Okla., while Los Angeles spent its week of preparation in California. Just ivluit is it going to tako to stop Pittsburgh Steelers? There seems to be a difference of opinion among members of Oakland Raiders. "Our offensive line has to handle their front says Oakland guard Gene Upshaw. "The game will come down to that." Upshaw is bracing himself for Sunday's Steeler onslaught against Oakland quarterback Ken Stabler in the American Conference championship, the door to the Super Bowl game for the National Football League title. "What they like to do is shut down the run and get ahead of you so you have to go to Im. Upshaw says. "Then those tough rushers will lay back their ears and come at you like tigers Those tough rushers are de- fensive tackles Joe Greene and Ernie Holmes and ends Dwight White and L.C. Greenwood, who teamed for 40 of Pittsburgh's league- leading 52 quarterback sacks during the season. But Oakland coach John Madden sees things differently, viewing quarter- back Terry Bradshaw as the major threat, particularly after his outstanding perfor- mance in last Sunday's 32-14 first-round playoff romp over Buffalo Bills. "Terry gives them a double says Madden. "He can run the ball or throw it." Linebacker Dan Conners agrees with his coach, calling Bradshaw "the key. If we're to win, we'll have to stop him." And what does Pittsburgh have to watch out for? There you'll find agreement. Stabler and his clutch wide receiver, Fred Biletmkoff, are the keys, the Steelers say. "We'll try not to give Stabler too much time to throw the says coach Chuck Noll. "Biletnikoff can run his comeback patterns when the quarterback has a lot of time." J.T. Thomas, one of Pitts- burgh's cornerbacks, will be busy trying to keep Biletnikoff and the ball apart. He knows he's got his work cut out for him "He's not very big and he's not too fast, but his moves are out of this Thomas says. "That's his thing- moves." Biletnikoff caught eight passes for 122 yards and a touchdown in Oakland 's 28-26 playoff victory over Miami last Saturday Most of those receptions were on a come- back patterns. This playoff game is the third in three years between these two teams but the first for a conference title. In the first round two years ago, the Steelers won 13-7 on what has become known as Franco Harris' reception of a last-ditch Bradshaw pass, aimed at Frenchy Fuqua, de- flected by Jack Tatum and grabbed at shoetop level by Harris for a 60-yard touchdown play. Hull unanimous choice LOS ANGELES (CP) Bobby Hull, experiencing one of the best seasons in his 18- year major-league career, was the only unanimous selec- tion to the West team an- nounced Friday for the World Hockey Association's third- annual all-star gane Jan. 21 in Edmonton. WHA president Dennis Mur- phy, in announcing the west squad as selected by players from the league's 14 teams, said Hull was the No. 1 left winger on all ballots and the only unanimous selection on the 18-man roster. The East team is to be announced Jan. 4. The format for the game, now that the WHA is a three- division league, will be geographic with the best from eastern-based clubs facing the best from western-based teams. Another veteran, Gordie Howe of Houston, was named to the squad, finishing second to team-mate Frank Hughes in balloting for right wing. The 46-year-old currently has 37 points, including 16 goals. The complete West team in order of selection: Daley, Winnipeg; Don McLeod, Vancouver; Wayne Rutledge, Houston. Defence Lars Erik Sjoberg, Winnipeg; Barry Long, Edmonton, Paul Popiel, Houston, Al Hamilton, Ed- monton, John Schella, Houston, Gerry Odrowski, Phoenix. Lund, Hous- ton, Andre Lacroix, San Diego; Ulf Nilsson. Winnipeg. Left Wing-Hull, Andre Hinse, Houston, Mark Howe, Houston Right Gor- die Howe, Mike Walton. Minnesota. FIRED KANSAS CITY (AP) Hank Stram. the only coach Kansas City Chiefs have ever had in their 15-year existence, was fired Friday as coach and vice-president of the National Football League franchise QUALITY DENTURE CLINIC EDDY DIETRICH Certified Denial Mechanic 303 5th Street South Metcalf Building PHONE 328-7684 Jumpers set new records at Games SASKATOON (CP) High Jo.ii Huntley arid pair- vaulter Dan Ripley had record-setting performances Friday night at the Saskatchewan Indoor Games. Huntley jumped six feet inches to break the Canadian and United States indoor standard of 6-1. Ripley vaulted 17 feet eight inches to surpass the Cana- dian indoor mark of Ripley and Huntley, both of the U.S., overshadowed two other outstanding efforts in in- vitational events. Joanne McTaggart of Saska- toon defeated Alice Annum of Washington, D.C., one of the best short-distance runners in the U.S., in the 200 metres. McTaggart finished in 24.7 seconds and Annum in 25.2. Francie Larrieu of Long Beach, Calif., beat Glenda Reiser of Ottawa, Canada's top female long-distance runner, in the metres Larrieu did it in 4.28.2 Reiser was third in in Vancr-uvo-'s Thelrr.a Wright was second in Huntley, an Oregan State University student, defeated Victoria's Debbie Brill, who cleared six feet, to defend the title she won last year. Ripley, a student at San Jose State College, got a chance to compete when two leading Polish vaulters had to cancel plans to participate. He vaulted 17-8 on his first attempt at that height, after needing two tries to clear 17-6. Although his best competitive jump before Friday was 16-3, Ripley had gone over 17-6 in practice. In other invitational events, Randy Makolosky of Calgary took the 800 metres in Fred Sowerby of Washington, D.C., won the 400-metre title in 49.1 seconds; and Mike Slack of North Dakota State College won the two-mile race in The meet ends tonight From Lethbridge to Lisbon OnlyVQisVQ Canada'sYQ the world's largest selling Canadian Whisky ;