Trashman asked in SportsHockey · 1 decade ago

The UK had a winning olympic hockey program?!?!?!?

I was researching the Olympic success of European teams for another question I just discovered the UK won a Bronze medal in the 1924 Olympics and a gold medal in the 1936 Olympics. Why have they done so little since and how many Brits are in the NHL?

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  • 1 decade ago
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    The 1936 British Olympic team had several Canadian born and trained players on it (all but 2 actually). Prior to the 1948 Olympics, the citizenship rules as set out by the IOC were very different based on a different political climate that was around the world, so a Canadian could go to Britain, get citizenship within 90 days (because he was born in the Commonwealth and the Commonwealth was there simply for Britain to exploit at the time). With the 1948 Winter Olympics, the IOC re-visited their citizenship rules due to the emergence/disappearance of countries, etc

    No British trained player has played a regular season NHL game to date. Tony Hand of Scotland played in a couple of exhibition games in 1986 for the Edmonton Oilers and scored 7 points (and scored 8 points in 3 WHL games with the Victoria Cougars before deciding that the NHL was not for him).

    45 British players have played in the NHL with Stockport, England's Steve Thomas the leading point getter with 933 points., Scotland's Charlie Gardiner was the first European born captain to win the Stanley Cup in 1934, and along with England's Joe Hall (the first European born player to play in the NHL, the first NHL player to die, and the only individual responsible for the cancellation of a Stanley Cup tournament) the only two Briton's in the Hockey Hall of Fame.

  • 1 decade ago

    Between the wars UK hockey was strong and Olympic hockey was kind of an afterthought so the teams of mostly Canadians that represented the UK did well. During WW2 the rinks were used as morgues. After the war times were hard and a lot of those rinks were never used again for their intended purpose. By the time the UK economy recovered from postwar austerity and had new rinks, other nations made sure they sent well prepared teams to the Olympics.

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