Weekly Links: History of the USSR’s involvement in Winter Olympics; TSN documentary on sport and homophobia; Fallout from brawl between Canucks and Flames

Welcome to Hockey in Society’s Weekly Links post. This feature highlights articles or blog entries that are related to Hockey in Society’s areas of interest and that may be of interest to the site’s readers. Please check out some of the great writing that is happening in the hockey media and blogosphere!

  • A pre-Olympics exhibition in Russia explores the USSR’s involvement in the Winter Olympics, including its significance to the Soviet regime and the political wrangling it entailed. One fascinating tidbit is how the Soviets shifted from playing bandy to playing ice hockey in order to be more competitive in international competition. [The Moscow News; h/t to Joe Pelletier (@HockeyLegends) for the link]
  • TSN is airing a three-part series called ReOrientation, hosted by Aaron Ward, that looks at the impact of homophobia and gay rights in sports. Adam Proteau gives a favourable review, arguing that the show is “another indication of a trip down a road we as a society aren’t turning back from.” [The Hockey News]
  • One unique public good in Toronto is its public skating/hockey rinks, which are maintained by the city and free to use for all. Marcus Gee tours 10 rinks in one day to give an insight into their environment and use by locals. [Globe and Mail]

  • The Vancouver Canucks and Calgary Flames began their game on Saturday with a line brawl that led to the ejection of four players from each team. The incident led Canucks coach John Tortorella to try to attack Flames coach Bob Hartley during the intermission, for which Elliotte Friedman argues he will likely be suspended. [CBC Sports]
  • Former NHL referee Kerry Fraser explains how the referees could have tried to curb the violence before it started. [TSN]
  • With Rogers’s massive takeover of the rights to NHL broadcasts, Ryan Kennedy says to expect broadcaster Nick Kypreos to become a more significant presence in the hockey media world. [The Hockey News]
  • A really interesting read on how the advanced stats movement, which was largely spearheaded by hockey bloggers, has encouraged a shift in strategy by some teams, most notable the Minnesota Wild. [SI.com]
  • Is Russian hockey sending a message by composing its men’s Olympics roster for Sochi with 40% KHL players? [The Hockey News]
  • The IOC has censored US women’s goalie Jessie Vetter’s mask for the Sochi Olympics, as it featured a quotation from the US Constitution and was deemed to be propaganda. [Puck Daddy]
  • Joe Pelletier recounts an odd moment of cross-sport promotion in the NHL’s history, when Edmonton Oilers enforcer Dave Semenko fought boxing legend Muhammad Ali in 1983. [Greatest Hockey Legends]
  • How profitable was the NHL’s Winter Classic between the Detroit Red Wings and Toronto Maple Leafs in Ann Arbor, MI? Try over $20 million profit for the league. [Puck Daddy]
  • Hosting of the 2015 NHL Entry Draft has been awarded to the Florida Panthers. [SB Nation]

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