The IIHF World Ranking is a list published by the International Ice Hockey Federation (IIHF) annually that ranks all of its member countries in term of performance of their national teams.

The first such ranking was issued in 2003.

The Ranking System[edit | edit source]

The ranking is based on the last Winter Olympic competition and on the last four World Championships. A point system is instaured in order to classify teams.

An Olympic gold medal and a World Championship title are worth as many points, id est 1,200. There is a 20 points interval between most of each position in the standings with 40 point intervals between 1st and 2nd, 2nd and 3rd, 4th and 5th, and 8th and 9th. Thus the team ranked second earns 1,160 points, third 1,120, fourteenth 860, fifteenth 840 and so on. The Olympic tournament and World Championships always have the same value; therefore, teams taking part in the Olympic tournament can earn as much as twice as many points as they would have if they didn't participate.

As mentioned earlier, the last four years of competitions are taken into account. Therefore, the final standing of a national team in the last four years of competition affects its ranking for all of that time; however, the further back in time the competition was held, the fewer points it is worth in the IIHF ranking calculation. Points received for a particular tournament decrease by 25% for every year that has passed since it took place. Therefore, a gold medal won at the 2006 Olympics that was worth 1,200 points in the 2006 IIHF World Ranking calculation was only worth 900 points in the 2007 calculation, 600 in the 2008, 300 in the 2009 and was not counted at all in the calculation for the 2010 IIHF World Ranking.

So, in order to calculate the number of points of any given team for any given year, the general formula would be as follows:

Points = (0.25xWC1 + 0.5xWC2 + 0.75xWC3 + WC4) + yOG

  • WC1 being the points awarded for the standings of the oldest World Championship;
  • WC4 being the points awarded for the standings of the most recent World Championship and
  • y being a variable worth either 0.25, 0.5, 0.75 or 1, depending on wether the last Olympic tournament was held respectively 4, 3, 2 or 1 years ago.

Current Men's World Ranking[edit | edit source]

Rank Team Points Movement
#1 Flag of Canada.png Canada 3,470 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#2 Flag of Russia.png Russia 3,400 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#3 Flag of Finland.png Finland 3,345 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#4 Flag of Sweden.png Sweden 3,325 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#5 Flag of the Czech Republic.png Czech Republic 3,200 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#6 Flag of the United States.png United States of America 3,140 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#7 Flag of Germany.png Germany 3,090 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#8 Flag of Switzerland.png Switzerland 3,060 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#9 Flag of Slovakia.png Slovakia 2,835 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#10 Flag of Latvia.png Latvia 2,810 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#11 Flag of Norway.png Norway 2,765 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#12 Flag of Denmark.png Denmark 2,685 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#13 Flag of Belarus.png Belarus 2,545 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#14 Flag of France.png France 2,540 RedDownArrow.png -1
#15 Flag of Italy.png Italy 2,480 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#16 Flag of Kazakhstan.png Kazakhstan 2,420 Green-Up-Arrow.png +3
#17 Flag of Austria.png Austria 2,415 RedDownArrow.png -2
#18 Flag of Korea.gif South Korea 2,385 RedDownArrow.png -1
#19 Flag of Great Britain.gif United Kingdom 2,380 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#20 Flag of Slovenia.png Slovenia 2,345 RedDownArrow.png -2
#21 Flag of Hungary.png Hungary 2,160 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#22 Flag of Poland.png Poland 2,060 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#23 Flag of Lithuania.png Lithuania 1,985 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#24 Flag of Japan.png Japan 1,975 RedDownArrow.png -1
#25 Flag of Romania.gif Romania 1,940 Green-Up-Arrow.png +2
#26 Flag of Ukraine.png Ukraine 1,875 RedDownArrow.png -1
#27 Flag of Estonia.png Estonia 1,860 RedDownArrow.png -1
#28 Flag of the Netherlands.png Netherlands 1,740 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#29 Flag of Croatia.gif Croatia 1,695 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#30 Flag of Serbia.gif Serbia 1,660 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#31 Flag of Spain.gif Spain 1,470 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#32 Flag of China.gif China 1,420 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#33 Flag of Iceland.gif Iceland 1,325 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#34 Flag of Israel.gif Israel 1,320 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#35 Flag of Australia.jpg Australia 1,315 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#36 Flag of Belgium.gif Belgium 1,150 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#37 Flag of Mexico.gif Mexico 1,150 RedDownArrow.png -1
#38 Flag of Georgia.png Georgia 1,095 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#39 Flag of New Zealand.gif New Zealand 1,015 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#40 Flag of Bulgaria.png Bulgaria 1,015 RedDownArrow.png -2
#41 Flag of North Korea.gif North Korea 860 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#42 Flag of Turkey.gif Turkey 750 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#43 Flag of Luxembourg.gif Luxembourg 705 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#44 Flag of Chinese Taipei.png Chinese Taipei 605 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#45 Flag of Turkmenistan.png Turkmenistan 590 Green-Up-Arrow.png +2
#46 Flag of South Africa.gif South Africa 545 RedDownArrow.png -2
#47 Flag of the United Arab Emirates.gif United Arab Emirates 500 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#48 Flag of Hong Kong.png Hong Kong 490 RedDownArrow.png -2
#49 Flag of Bosnia and Herzegovina.png Bosnia and Herzegovina 335 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#50 Flag of Thailand.png Thailand 280 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#51 Flag of Kuwait.png Kuwait 280 RedDownArrow.png -1
#52 Flag of Kyrgyzstan.png Kyrgyzstan 175 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#53 Flag of Malaysia.jpg Malaysia 80 new
#54 Flag of Philippines.png Philippines 60 new

Current Women's World Ranking[edit | edit source]

Rank Team Points Movement
#1 Flag of the United States.png United States of America 3,600 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#2 Flag of Canada.png Canada 3,450 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#3 Flag of Finland.png Finland 3,390 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#4 Flag of Russia.png Russia 3,290 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#5 Flag of Switzerland.png Switzerland 3,170 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#6 Flag of Japan.png Japan 3,070 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#7 Flag of the Czech Republic.png Czech Republic 3,030 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#8 Flag of Germany.png Germany 3,000 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#9 Flag of Sweden.png Sweden 2,920 RedDownArrow.png -2
#10 Flag of France.png France 2,760 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#11 Flag of Denmark.png Denmark 2,750 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#12 Flag of Hungary.png Hungary 2,720 Green-Up-Arrow.png +2
#13 Flag of Norway.png Norway 2,660 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#14 Flag of Austria.png Austria 2,640 RedDownArrow.png -2
#15 Flag of Slovakia.png Slovakia 2,510 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#16 Flag of Korea.gif South Korea 2,455 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#17 Flag of Italy.png Italy 2,445 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#18 Flag of the Netherlands.png Netherlands 2,315 Green-Up-Arrow.png +3
#19 Flag of China.gif China 2,250 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#20 Flag of Poland.png Poland 2,235 Green-Up-Arrow.png +2
#21 Flag of Kazakhstan.png Kazakhstan 2,225 RedDownArrow.png -2
#22 Flag of Latvia.png Latvia 2,195 RedDownArrow.png -4
#23 Flag of Great Britain.gif United Kingdom 2,005 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#24 Flag of Slovenia.png Slovenia 2,000 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#25 Flag of Spain.gif Spain 1,905 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#26 Flag of Mexico.gif Mexico 1,865 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#27 Flag of Turkey.gif Turkey 1,565 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#28 Flag of North Korea.gif North Korea 1,555 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#29 Flag of Australia.jpg Australia 1,480 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#30 Flag of Chinese Taipei.png Chinese Taipei 1,410 Green-Up-Arrow.png +3
#31 Flag of Iceland.gif Iceland 1,345 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#32 Flag of New Zealand.gif New Zealand 1,335 RedDownArrow.png -1
#33 Flag of Hong Kong.png Hong Kong 1,225 RedDownArrow.png -3
#34 Flag of Romania.gif Romania 1,120 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#35 Flag of Croatia.gif Croatia 1,080 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#36 Flag of Belgium.gif Belgium 1,080 Green-Up-Arrow.png +1
#37 Flag of South Africa.gif South Africa 1,070 RedDownArrow.png -2
#38 Flag of Bulgaria.png Bulgaria 955 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#39 Flag of Ukraine.png Ukraine 790 Disc Plain yellow dark.png 0
#40 Flag of Lithuania.png Lithuania 360 new

Criticism[edit | edit source]

The current method to establish the rankings has received some criticism, chiefly because it gives as much weight to the World Championship as the Olympics and because it ignores other national teams tournaments such as the World Cup. The main argument behind this criticism is that in the World Championships, the best NHL players aren't necessarily playing, as many are still taking part in the Stanley Cup playoffs, while they are taking part in the Olympics and in the World Cup (when the latter is held).

Use[edit | edit source]

Those rankings primary use is to determine the seedings of teams for the next World Championship and to select the teams that earn a place in the next Winter Olympics without needing to qualify beforehand. For the 2010 Olympics, the nine top teams of the 2009 IIHF World Ranking will automatically qualify for a spot in the Olympic tournament; for the women, it is the six best that gain automatic qualification.

Past Rankings[edit | edit source]

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