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Starting in [[1978 World Ice Hockey Championships|1978]], the Soviet team won five consecutive World Championships, and had an unbeaten streak that lasted from [[1981 World Ice Hockey Championships|1981]] through the [[1984 Winter Olympics]] and until [[1985 World Ice Hockey Championships|1985]].<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-62.html|title=Story #62–Soviets’ revenge for Lake Placid – 13-1 over Sweden|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref> During that period, Canada remained competitive, winning three bronze medals. World Championship tournaments were not held in 1980, 1984 or 1988–the Olympic years.<ref name="AllMed"/> The [[1987 World Ice Hockey Championships|1987 World Championships]] in Vienna were over-shadowed by several controversies. At the beginning of the tournament, the roster of the [[West Germany national ice hockey team|West German]] team included Miroslav Sikora, a Polish-German forward who had previously played for Poland at the [[1977 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships|1977 World Under-20 Championship]]. Sikora became a naturalized citizen of West Germany and played in the first three games, scoring a goal in a 3–1 win over Finland. Following the game, Finland launched a protest, demanding that the result be over-turned because the Germans had used an ineligible player. At the time, IIHF rules did allow players to switch nationalities under any circumstances and the IIHF agreed to overturn the result and award the two points to Finland. This angered German officials, who filed a protest in an Austrian court. The court agreed with the Germans, overturning the IIHF decision and allowing them to keep their points. The result affected the final standings because had the IIHF's decision stood, Finland would have advanced to the medal round instead of Sweden.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-29.html|title=Story #29–"Sikora case" - Vienna court decides the 1987 Worlds medal race|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref> However, the Finns finished out of the medal round, and Sweden won their first gold medal since 1962. The tournament format also became controversial because the Soviet Union finished undefeated but the Swedish team, which had lost three games in the preliminary round, won because of an inflated 9-0 win over Canada.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-44.html|title=Story #44–Amid turmoil, Sweden wins first gold in a quarter of a century|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref>
 
Starting in [[1978 World Ice Hockey Championships|1978]], the Soviet team won five consecutive World Championships, and had an unbeaten streak that lasted from [[1981 World Ice Hockey Championships|1981]] through the [[1984 Winter Olympics]] and until [[1985 World Ice Hockey Championships|1985]].<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-62.html|title=Story #62–Soviets’ revenge for Lake Placid – 13-1 over Sweden|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref> During that period, Canada remained competitive, winning three bronze medals. World Championship tournaments were not held in 1980, 1984 or 1988–the Olympic years.<ref name="AllMed"/> The [[1987 World Ice Hockey Championships|1987 World Championships]] in Vienna were over-shadowed by several controversies. At the beginning of the tournament, the roster of the [[West Germany national ice hockey team|West German]] team included Miroslav Sikora, a Polish-German forward who had previously played for Poland at the [[1977 World Junior Ice Hockey Championships|1977 World Under-20 Championship]]. Sikora became a naturalized citizen of West Germany and played in the first three games, scoring a goal in a 3–1 win over Finland. Following the game, Finland launched a protest, demanding that the result be over-turned because the Germans had used an ineligible player. At the time, IIHF rules did allow players to switch nationalities under any circumstances and the IIHF agreed to overturn the result and award the two points to Finland. This angered German officials, who filed a protest in an Austrian court. The court agreed with the Germans, overturning the IIHF decision and allowing them to keep their points. The result affected the final standings because had the IIHF's decision stood, Finland would have advanced to the medal round instead of Sweden.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-29.html|title=Story #29–"Sikora case" - Vienna court decides the 1987 Worlds medal race|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref> However, the Finns finished out of the medal round, and Sweden won their first gold medal since 1962. The tournament format also became controversial because the Soviet Union finished undefeated but the Swedish team, which had lost three games in the preliminary round, won because of an inflated 9-0 win over Canada.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-44.html|title=Story #44–Amid turmoil, Sweden wins first gold in a quarter of a century|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref>
   
===1989–1992: Fall of the Iron Curtain and more Soviet dominance===
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===1989–1992: Fall of the Iron Curtain===
 
[[Image:Igor Larionov3-2008-11-21.jpg|right|thumb|150px|upright|Soviet forward [[Igor Larionov]] won four World Championships before departing to play in the NHL in 1989.<ref name="Num65"/>]]
 
[[Image:Igor Larionov3-2008-11-21.jpg|right|thumb|150px|upright|Soviet forward [[Igor Larionov]] won four World Championships before departing to play in the NHL in 1989.<ref name="Num65"/>]]
 
Before 1989, players that lived in the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, and other nations behind the Iron Curtain were not allowed to leave and play in the NHL.<ref name="Pincus148">{{Harvnb|Pincus|2006|p=148}}</ref> In March [[1988–89 NHL season|1989]], [[Sergei Pryakhin]] became the first member of the Soviet national team who was permitted to play for a non-Soviet team.<ref>{{Harvnb|Boer|2006|p=104}}</ref> Several Soviet players, including [[Igor Larionov]] and [[Viacheslav Fetisov]], wanted to leave and play in the NHL. Soviet officials agreed to allow players to leave if they played one final tournament with the national team. Players agreed to this, and the Soviet Union won its 21st [[1989 World Ice Hockey Championships|World Championship]].<ref name="Num65">{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-65.html|title=Story #65–Igor Larionov openly revolts against coach, system|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref> Shortly after, Soviet players began to flood into the NHL.<ref>{{Cite news |last=Duhatschek |first=Eric |title=GMs figure Soviets one day will flood market |date=1989-06-18 |page=E4 |newspaper=Calgary Herald}}</ref> Many of the Soviet Union's top players left, including the entire "[[Russian Five|Green Unit]]"–Larionov, Fetisov, [[Vladimir Krutov]], [[Sergei Makarov]] and [[Alexei Kasatonov]].<ref>{{Cite document |url=http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/hockey/news/2002/09/27/soviet_legacy/ |title=Sweeping Changes |accessdate=2008-08-08 |date=2002-09-27 |publisher=''Sports Illustrated'' |ref=harv |postscript=<!--None-->}}</ref> The following year, the Soviet team was in disarray but still managed to win the [[1990 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships|1990 World Championships]]. It was the final championship the Soviet team would win. In [[1991 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships|1991]], Swedish forward [[Mats Sundin]]–the first European player to be drafted [[List of first overall NHL draft picks|first overall in the NHL]]–led his team to the gold medal. The Soviets won bronze–the last medal the team would ever win.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-32.html|title=Story #32–Sundin’s marvellous goal ends Soviet Union’s hockey era|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref>
 
Before 1989, players that lived in the Soviet Union, Czechoslovakia, and other nations behind the Iron Curtain were not allowed to leave and play in the NHL.<ref name="Pincus148">{{Harvnb|Pincus|2006|p=148}}</ref> In March [[1988–89 NHL season|1989]], [[Sergei Pryakhin]] became the first member of the Soviet national team who was permitted to play for a non-Soviet team.<ref>{{Harvnb|Boer|2006|p=104}}</ref> Several Soviet players, including [[Igor Larionov]] and [[Viacheslav Fetisov]], wanted to leave and play in the NHL. Soviet officials agreed to allow players to leave if they played one final tournament with the national team. Players agreed to this, and the Soviet Union won its 21st [[1989 World Ice Hockey Championships|World Championship]].<ref name="Num65">{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-65.html|title=Story #65–Igor Larionov openly revolts against coach, system|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref> Shortly after, Soviet players began to flood into the NHL.<ref>{{Cite news |last=Duhatschek |first=Eric |title=GMs figure Soviets one day will flood market |date=1989-06-18 |page=E4 |newspaper=Calgary Herald}}</ref> Many of the Soviet Union's top players left, including the entire "[[Russian Five|Green Unit]]"–Larionov, Fetisov, [[Vladimir Krutov]], [[Sergei Makarov]] and [[Alexei Kasatonov]].<ref>{{Cite document |url=http://sportsillustrated.cnn.com/hockey/news/2002/09/27/soviet_legacy/ |title=Sweeping Changes |accessdate=2008-08-08 |date=2002-09-27 |publisher=''Sports Illustrated'' |ref=harv |postscript=<!--None-->}}</ref> The following year, the Soviet team was in disarray but still managed to win the [[1990 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships|1990 World Championships]]. It was the final championship the Soviet team would win. In [[1991 Men's World Ice Hockey Championships|1991]], Swedish forward [[Mats Sundin]]–the first European player to be drafted [[List of first overall NHL draft picks|first overall in the NHL]]–led his team to the gold medal. The Soviets won bronze–the last medal the team would ever win.<ref>{{Cite web|url=http://www.iihf.com/iihf-home/the-iihf/100-year-anniversary/100-top-stories/story-32.html|title=Story #32–Sundin’s marvellous goal ends Soviet Union’s hockey era|accessdate=2009-03-10|year=2008|author=[[#Podmon|Szemberg, Szymon; Podnieks, Andrew]]}}</ref>
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