Henderson’s ’72 goal still tugs Canuck hearts

by | Sep 28, 2012 | News

By Chanelle Seguin

Many Canadians, like Fran Mohr, feel that Henderson’s goal gave the country a sense of pride like no other sporting moment. COURTESY FRAN MOHR

It happened 40 years ago today, but the impact of Paul Henderson’s 1972 Summit Series goal continues to have a lasting effect on Canadians.

“That game got me into hockey,” said Fran Mohr, resident of Toronto.

Mohr was 10 years old when she watched the iconic game-eight of the 1972 Summit Series.

“That whole game meant something to me,” said Mohr. “I watch hockey anytime the Leafs play, anytime there’s hockey, and it’s all because of that game back in ’72.”

“I’ll never forget that man…”

Fran Mohr Audio Clip

When Foster Hewitt yelled the words “they score! Henderson has scored for Canada!” it made a lasting impact on not just Canadian hockey fans but all Canadian citizens.

Many Canadians remember exactly what they were doing and where they were during the Henderson goal.

Julie Usbourne, resident of Kindersly Saskachewan, remembers being in school at the time and explained  there were special circumstances for class times because of the game.

“For that particular game we were allowed to watch TV in our classes,” recalls Usbourne, who was in junior high at the time. “We only changed classes at commercial breaks or between periods.”

In a recent interview with the Vancouver Sun, Henderson said in the final minutes of the game he knew he just had to get on the ice.

“I felt I had to get on the ice,” Henderson told the Vancouver Sun. “A tie was no good they were going to claim victory because they had scored more goals than we did. I really wish I had an answer, but I don’t. I just felt I had to get out there, I felt I could score a goal.”

There has been a lot of comparison between Henderson’s goal in ’72 and Sidney Crosby’s overtime winning Olympic gold medal goal against the Americans in 2010.

Karl Siroen, fourth-year justice studies student at Guelph Humber, said the Crosby goal was our generation’s version of the Henderson goal.

“Both goals gave Canadians excitement and a sense of this huge weight being lifted off our shoulder,” said Siroen.

James Duthie, host of TSN’s NHL on TSN, told Humber News that the comparison between the Henderson goal and the Crosby goal is a worthy debate

“For me the Crosby goal is bigger because I was there,” said Duthie. “But ’72 culturally and politically meant a lot more to the country.”