An Unlikely Friendship that Changed the Game - Lou Vairo Part 3

October 02, 2019

WeLiveHockey Experience

This episode of our podcast was really important to us. Not only because it includes two of the most influential hockey people of their time (they both changed the game) but because it shows that hockey can bring people together, even in spite of hostile circumstances. 

There’s no reason that Lou Vairo (USA Hockey) & Anatoli Tarasov (USSR Hockey) should have been friends at the height of the Cold War - but they were. Their love for the game and friendship transcended the politics of the time. 

This episode is under 20 minutes - take a listen if you have time. You’ll hear about how:


For a long time, the U.S. and Russians weren't exactly fans of each other. Lou tells us how he saw it differently, especially when it came to hockey. Lou saw them as a hockey powerhouse that were creative in every aspect of the game, thanks to head coach Anotoli Tarasov.

Because of his admiration for the way the Russians played the game, He reached out to Tarasov about wanting to learn more about his team's style and how they went about playing the game. 

Lou tells us how him and Tarasov became great friends and how they met with each other a ton to and how Tarasov was such an inspiration to him.

It was interesting to hear Lou talk about the conversations he had with Tarasov through an interpreter. He shares a funny story about seeing dolphins with Tarasov when they were at an aquarium.

Lou tells us how Tarasov taught him about different drills to use and how in the end, it made him learn to appreciate creativity, which is where the game is today.

We hope you enjoyed our podcast series with the great Lou Vairo. We have a ton more great podcasts to share with you so make sure you subscribe to it here.