I'm not going to run down both men's lives here, but I do want to point out the highlights in their illustrious careers.
Mr. Tikohonov received the Order of the Red Banner of Labour in 1978, awarded to honour "great deeds and services to the Soviet state and society in the fields of production, science, culture, literature, the arts, education, health, social and other spheres of labour activities". He received the Order of Friendship of Peoples in 1981 for "accomplishments in strengthening of inter-ethnic and international friendship and cooperation, for economical, political, scientific, military, and cultural development of the Soviet Union". In 1983, Mr. Tikohonov was awarded the Order of Lenin - the highest decoration given out by the Soviet Union - for outstanding services rendered to the State, promoting friendship and cooperation between peoples and in strengthening peace, and for meritorious services to the Soviet state and society. Mr. Tikhonov was awarded the Order of the October Revolution - the second-highest honour given out by the Soviet Union - for services furthering communism or the state. And we haven't even started talking about the honours he received for his hockey contributions, although they played a big part in the above awards.
Mr. Tikhonov was also a defenceman with VVS Moscow and Dynamo Moscow from 1949 to 1963, winning four national Russian championships. He was the coach of the Soviet Union team that won eight World Championship gold medals and three Olympic gold medals in 1984, 1988, and 1992. Mr. Tikhonov also led CSKA Moscow to twelve consecutive Russian SuperLeague championships during his time behind the bench.
Needless to say, he's a well-decorated hockey icon.
Mr. Quinn also found success on the ice as he was a member of the 1963 Edmonton Oil Kings team that captured the Memorial Cup. He had originally signed with the Detroit Red Wings, but played his first NHL game as a member of the Toronto Maple Leafs in 1968. In 1970, the Canucks selected Mr. Quinn in the expansion draft, and, two years later, he was selected by the Atlanta Flames in the expansion draft. Mr. Quinn would nine play seasons in the league with the Maple Leafs, Canucks and Atlanta Flames. As a part-owner of the Vancouver Giants, he would win a second Memorial Cup in 2007. The Parkdale Arena in Mr. Quinn's hometown of Hamilton, Ontario had been renamed in 2005 as the Pat Quinn Parkdale Arena in his honour.
We lost Viktor Tikhonov and Pat Quinn today after both battled long illnesses. Mr. Tikohonov passed away at the age of 84. Mr. Quinn passed away at the age of 71. The hockey world has lost two of best minds in the game of hockey today.
Rest in peace, gentlemen. It was an honour to be able to witness your genius.
Until next time, keep your sticks on the ice!