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Ken Dryden's call was 'unbelievable'

Montreal Canadiens goalie Ken Dryden in net at

Montreal Canadiens goalie Ken Dryden in net at Madison Square Garden. (Credit: Newsday file photo)

It nearly is time for another Winter Olympics, which means inevitably it will be time to recall a certain Olympic hockey moment from February of 1980, and the famous TV call that went with it.

What many forget is that tightly sandwiched on either side of Al Michaels’ iconic “Do you believe in miracles? Yes!’’ his partner in the booth in Lake Placid, Ken Dryden, chimed in.

Before Michaels’ line, Dryden said, “It’s over.” Then immediately after it...

“And then the real line that is lost to time, unfortunately, was mine afterwards,’’ he said during a recent interview to promote the reissue of his 1983 book, "The Game."

“For years afterward our kids would say, ‘Dad, Al Michaels comes up with, ‘Do you believe in miracles? Yes!’ and you come up with ‘unbelievable?’’’

Years later he recalled being interviewed by HBO for an anniversary show and the interviewer told him, “I always thought you really captured it with that one word: Unbelievable.’’

Said Dryden: “I’m sort of looking at him waiting for him to start laughing. And he was serious. I was like, Oh, wow, I have to get home and tell everyone.’’

When the 2004 movie “Miracle’’ was being made about the 1980 United States team and its gold medal run, Michaels and Dryden were asked to record voiceovers recreating the big moment against the Soviet Union.

“I read the script and there’s no ‘unbelievable' in the script,’’’ Dryden said. “So I said, 'But I said ‘unbelievable.’ You have no idea how much this matters to me. It really matters to me. I need to say ‘unbelievable.’ They said, ‘Oh, OK.’ So I recorded ‘unbelievable’ and they chopped it [from the movie].’’

Tags: Olympics

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