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Herb Brooks

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Miracle_on_Ice_-_Herb_Brooks.jpg
Brooks calms his players' nerves during the Miracle on Ice game against the Soviet Union.

Herbert Paul Brooks (August 5, 1937August 11, 2003) was an American ice hockey coach, best known for coaching the U.S. hockey team to a gold medal at the 1980 Winter Olympics in an event known as the Miracle on Ice.

Born in White Bear Lake, Minnesota, he played on the Johnson High School hockey team that won the state championship in 1955. Brooks later played hockey at the University of Minnesota and was a member of the 1964 and 1968 United States Olympic teams. Later, he coached the Minnesota Golden Gophers hockey team to three NCAA championships (1974, 1976, and 1978). He coached St. Cloud State University in the mid 1980s.

He was coach of the United States hockey team at the 1980 Winter Olympics that won the gold medal. The team, which was composed of college-aged players, defeated Finland in the final match of the medal round after beating the Soviet Union in the previous game. The Soviet Union, which had won four consecutive Olympic titles from 1964 to 1976, was considered the best team at these Olympics, while the U.S. reaching the medal round was already considered a surprise. The victory later became known as the Miracle on Ice.

He was inducted into the United States Hockey Hall of Fame in 1990.

Brooks later coached in the National Hockey League for the New York Rangers, Minnesota North Stars, New Jersey Devils, and Pittsburgh Penguins.

He again coached the U.S. hockey team at the 2002 Winter Olympics, this time winning a silver medal. He also coached France in the 1998 Winter Olympics.

Brooks died in a one-car accident on the afternoon of August 11, 2003 near Forest Lake, MN

Disney released a film about the 1980 Olympic team in 2004 called Miracle featuring Kurt Russell playing the part of Brooks. Brooks served as a consultant during principal photography, which was completed shortly before his death.

Upon the 25th anniversary of the Miracle on Ice, the Olympic ice arena in Lake Placid, where the United States won their gold medal, was renamed Herb Brooks Arena.

See also


Preceded by:
Kevin Constantine
Head Coach of the Pittsburgh Penguins
2000
Succeeded by:
Ivan Hlinka

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