Great Game Previews In History: 13 March 2014

by J.R.

Today In History

GustavarrestOn March 14, 1809, King Gustav IV Adolf of Sweden is deposed in a coup d’etat.

Gustav IV had become unpopular and his leadership questioned due to his rather erratic handling of foreign affairs. In 1805, he joined the Third Coalition against Napoleon. In 1807, though, Russia made peace with Napoleon, leaving Sweden and Portugal as the only Continental allies in Britain’s war against Napoleon. In 1808, Russia invaded Finland — then part of Sweden — to compel Gustav to make peace and join with Napoleon. Denmark then declared war on Sweden and Finland was lost to the Russians. Meanwhile, at home, Gustav — spurned by earlier failures — repeatedly refused to summon a Riksdag.

In early March 1809, conspirators marched on Stockholm, leading to Gustav’s eventual downfall.

Oilers at Blues, 7 PM

Records: Oilers (23-35-8, 54 points, 7th in Pacific); Blues (44-14-7, 95 points, 1st in Conference III)

Last Time They Met: St. Louis goes for the season sweep having taking both games in the series in Edmonton, the last a 5-2 win January 7.

Last 10: Edmonton 5-3-2; St. Louis 7-2-1

Historical Context: It’s the west’s best versus its worst tonight in St. Louis. When Gustav was forced to abdicate, he had hoped it would bring his son, also Gustav, to power, but the conspirators, fearing that the young Gustav would later try to avenge his father, declared that the entire family had abdicated and gave the crown instead to Gustav IV’s childless uncle, proclaiming him Charles XIII. That set in motion a series of events that would lead to the French general Jean-Baptiste Bernadotte taking the throne of Sweden as Charles XIV John and establishing the House of Bernadotte that has the throne of Sweden today. It all proves that rebuilds don’t always go the way they should.

Rangers at Wild, 7 PM

Records: Rangers (35-27-4, 74 points, 2nd in SUDM); Wild (34-22-9, 73 points, 4th in Conference III)

Last Time They Met: The Rangers won 4-1 December 22 at Madison Square Garden.

Last 10: New York 5-4-1; Minnesota 5-2-3

Historical Context: Everyone had a hard time figuring out Gustav, at least until his ineptitude showed itself. At first, he was lauded as a God-fearing leader, especially after an incident with his intended, a Russian princess who Gustav refused to allow to worship as she wished. Then, when he came of age, he dismissed the unpopular advisor Gustaf Adolf Reuterholm, again bolstering his popularity. But what is popular is not always good. And sometimes good ends are motivated by paranoia and mental distress. Minnesota has similarly been hard to suss and now the charging Stars may have them living in paranoia.

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