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The Most Famous Sports Photograph in Canada!

Be First!
by October 8, 2012 Home, Uncategorized


The most famous photograph by Denis Brodeur is one taken over 40 years ago during an eight-game hockey duel between Canada and the USSR.  Brodeur loves this photo so much that he packs the negatives of it around for trips and family vacations, because he was afraid of their being lost.  The photo is of Team Canada’s Paul Henderson having just scored the game-winning, 1972 Summit Series-clinching goal, being bear-hugged by teammate Yvan Cournoyer, while Soviet players around them display contrasting emotions from the Canadians.  The photo is actually the sixth in a series of motor-driven images taken last Sept. 28, 1972.  There were a lot of other photographers in the arena that day, but only Brodeur and Frank Lennon were able to capture the shot.  In fact, Lennon’s is nearly identical to Brodeur’s.  Brodeur, whose day job included shooting action photos for Canadians programs, was in Moscow that night on his own ticket, but he wasn’t even sure that he would get to Moscow because he was ill with bleeding intestines and was also a nervous wreck because he had been told that a lot of Soviets wouldn’t let him go home with his film.  His solution?  He packed a lot of chocolate bars to use as calling cards and gifts.  Incidentally, he was allowed in the spot where he was when he captured this great photo because he had given an usher some chocolate.  During the action on the ice, he had his Nikon F pressed to his eye and saw nothing through the camera because the motor-drive kept firing, and was afraid that it would not be sharp, especially since he was using fast black-and-white Kodak film that he pushed to its maximum because of poor arena light and while his shutter speed was 1/500th of a second, his 135mm lens was at f2.8, which meant very little depth of field.  Thankfully, even if the images were grainy, they were all sharp.  Brodeur considers this the greatest shot of his life, even greater than any photo he’s taken of his son Martin, who incidentally is argued by some as the greatest goaltender hockey has ever seen.  The lesson of this story?  Take chances to get the shot and always, ALWAYS bring chocolate.

Via The Montreal Gazette.


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