| style="padding: 0in;"|
The '''Soviet national ice hockey team''', or '''USSR national ice hockey team''' (
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russian_language Russian ]: Сборная СССР по хоккею с шайбой), was the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/National_team national ] [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_hockey hockey ] team of the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Soviet_Union Soviet Union ].
The Soviets were the most dominant teams of all time in international play. The team won nearly every
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_Hockey_World_Championships world championship ] and [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ice_hockey_at_the_Olympic_Games Olympic tournament ] between 1954 and 1991 held by the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/International_Ice_Hockey_Federation International Ice Hockey Federation ] (IIHF), only defeated in 1960 and 1980 by the United States; the games became known as the "Forgotten Miracle" and the '' [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Miracle_on_Ice Miracle on Ice ]'', respectively.
Due to the questionable nature of the amateur status of the Soviet players, their participation in the Olympics was questioned. The controversy was about the IIHF's definition of amateurs and professionals. However, the Soviets were generally dominant in amateur and professional tournaments alike.
After 1991, the Soviet team competed as the
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unified_Team Unified Team ] at the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Unified_Team_at_the_1992_Winter_Olympics 1992 Winter Olympics ] and as the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Commonwealth_of_Independent_States Commonwealth of Independent States ] at the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/1992_Men%27s_World_Ice_Hockey_Championships 1992 World Championship ]. In 1993, it was replaced by national teams for [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Belarus_men%27s_national_ice_hockey_team Belarus ], [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Estonia_men%27s_national_ice_hockey_team Estonia ], [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kazakhstan_men%27s_national_ice_hockey_team Kazakhstan ], [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Latvia_men%27s_national_ice_hockey_team Latvia ], [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lithuania_national_ice_hockey_team Lithuania ], [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Russia_national_ice_hockey_team Russia ] and [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Ukraine_national_ice_hockey_team Ukraine ]. The IIHF recognized the Russian as the successor to the Soviet Union team and passed its ranking on Russia. The other national hockey teams were considered new and sent to compete in Pool C.
The IIHF Team of the Century included four Soviet-Russian players out of a team of six. Goalie
[http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vladislav_Tretiak Vladislav Tretiak ], defenseman [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Vyacheslav_Fetisov Vyacheslav Fetisov ] and forwards [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Valeri_Kharlamov Valeri Kharlamov ] and [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sergei_Makarov Sergei Makarov ] who played for the Soviet teams in the 1970s and the 1980s were voted on to the [http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/IIHF_Centennial_All-Star_Team IIHF Centennial All-Star Team ] in a poll conducted by a group of 56 experts from 16 countries
The team won the gold medal in: 1977, 1978, 1979, 1980, 1983, 1984, and 1989.