Miracle (2004)

This film is another docudrama that tells the story of the United States Hockey Team that won the 1980 Winter Olympics gold medal. The U.S. Men’s Hockey Team’s win over the Soviet Union, a heavily-favored team, was deemed by many to be impossible. Thus this victory was given the name “Miracle on ice”.

Miracle
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The subject of teamwork presents itself on several occasions:

  • The first instance is when Coach Brooks meets his Assistant Coach assigned to the team, Craig Patrick, at tryouts in Colorado. This may seem like a simple meeting. However, it was critical that these two worked together as a team, or nothing would have been accomplished. Whether verbalized or not, Brooks and Patrick understood that, thus the first team was formed.

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  • Part of teamwork is having good rapport, and Coach Brooks began instilling that in the players right away. Not only did he squelch the conflict, but he also had each player introduce himself to the team and share his hometown. That was the first step towards team camaraderie.

  • In the very first practice session, two players begin fighting over an old rivalry from their college days. Coach Brooks stops the practice and tells all of the players that they must put their personal differences aside and become a team if they truly want to win.

  • Once the players get used to Coach Brooks’ style and accept the culture that he wants to instill as they practice and play, they collectively, as a team, begin to get used to the workouts, drawing plays on the glass in the arena, and most importantly, they show more respect for their Coach. The players truly start to form a bond at this point, are more respectful towards each other, and begin acting like a solid unit.

  • When Coach Brooks considered bringing back a player back to the team who had previously been released, two of the players voice their concerns about the situation to the Coach. When Coach Brooks asks then why he should not allow this player back on the team, the players tell him it is because they’re a family, they had formed a solid bond and they wanted to keep it that way. This instance shows that the players had gained an understanding of the vision of teamwork that Coach was attempting to instill in them.

  • There was also an unlikely and quite possibly overlooked example of teamwork between the United States and the Soviet Union: If you consider the time in history that these games took place (1980) and the world turmoil currently going on regarding the Soviet Union invading Afghanistan, it could not have been a more turbulent situation for these two countries. Then, president Jimmy Carter threatened to boycott the Moscow Summer Olympic Games. It was truly the height of the 1980’s “Cold War”. The United States and the Soviet Union had to indirectly “work together” to push forward with the Lake Placid Winter Olympic Games.

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