There was no sports fan in the Soviet Union who did not know Nikolai Ozerov. On December 11, this wonderful person would have turned 95 years old.
Everyone knew Nikolai Nikolaevich as a commentator. But he was also an excellent tennis player: at the USSR championships in the 40-50s, Ozerov won 24 gold medals in singles, doubles and mixed categories. None of the Soviet tennis players managed to repeat this record.
Ozerov's great-great-grandfather was a priest and composer, his father was an opera singer, People's Artist of the RSFSR, and his older brother was a film director, shot several epics dedicated to the Great Patriotic War.
Nikolai Ozerov became a commentator by accident, he dreamed of a theatrical career, in 1946 he graduated from GITIS and was invited to the Moscow Art Theater. But, in 1950, radio commentator Viktor Dubinin was appointed coach of the Dynamo Moscow football club. Looking for a replacement, Dubinin remembered the young actor and famous tennis player Nikolai Ozerov.
After the internship, Ozerov was admitted to independent work. On August 29, 1950, sitting on a tree branch, a young commentator was reporting on the meeting between the players of the Moscow Dynamo and the CDKA. After a while, letters from listeners began to arrive on the radio. The rookie commentator was overwhelmingly positive.
Happened in the biography of the commentator Ozerov and injuries. Once, during a hockey match "Spartak" - CSKA, Ozerov came too close to the side. A scuffle broke out on the ice at that time, and CSKA striker Sergei Kapustin accidentally hit the commentator on the head with a stick. The medics had to provide assistance to Ozerov, and Yevgeny Mayorov was temporarily reporting. Soon Ozerov, to the applause of the stands, returned to the microphone again.
The achievements of Ozerov as a commentator are no less impressive than his sports victories: for almost 40 years he has been reporting on radio and television. During this time, he attended 15 Olympics, 30 world hockey championships, commented on matches of 8 world championships and 6 European football championships.
It was Ozerov who was entrusted with reporting from the legendary hockey series of the USSR - Canada in 1972. After watching the game of overseas professionals, Ozerov uttered his famous phrase: "We don't need this kind of hockey!"
The leadership of the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) considered that the contribution of the commentator Ozerov to the development of this sport is no less significant than the merits of the legendary players. In May 2016, Nikolai Nikolaevich was included in the IIHF Hall of Fame.
One can talk endlessly about the popularity of Nikolai Ozerov, here is just one remarkable fact. Once Nikolai Nikolaevich gave a lift to VM Molotov, the former Minister of Foreign Affairs of the USSR, in his car. Getting out of the car, the old revolutionary proudly said: “I'll tell you, they won't believe! I went with Ozerov himself! "
Probably, many sports fans are interested in: do commentators root for any team? In his reports, Nikolai Ozerov tried to be as impartial as possible, but he always rooted for Spartak.