|Republic(s)|| Byelorussian SSR |
|Relegation to||Soviet Class A2|
Soviet Class B
|Championship||Soviet Hockey Championship|
|Associated Title(s)||Soviet Cup|
|Most successful club||CSKA Moscow (32)|
The Soviet Hockey Championship (Russian : Чемпионат СССР по хоккею) was the highest level ice hockey league in the Soviet Union, running from 1946 to 1992. Before the 1940s the game of ice hockey was not cultivated in Russia, instead the more popular form of hockey was bandy. Following the dissolution of the USSR, the league was temporarily renamed the CIS Championship in 1992. This organization was the direct predecessor of the International Hockey League (Russian : Межнациональная хоккейная Лига), and subsequent Russian Superleague (RSL) and current Kontinental Hockey League (KHL).
The first cities to enter teams in the Soviet League were Arkhangelsk, Kaunas, Leningrad, Moscow, Riga, Sverdlovsk, Tallinn and Uzhhorod. The teams were populated with amateur players who were actually full-time athletes hired as regular workers of a company (aircraft industry, food workers, tractor industry) or organization (KGB, Red Army, Soviet Air Force) that sponsored what would be presented as an after-hours social sports society hockey team for their workers. In other words, all Soviet hockey players were de facto professionals who circumvented the amateur rules of the International Olympic Committee to retain their amateur status and compete in the Olympics.
Far and away the most dominant club in league history was HC CSKA Moscow, the famous "Red Army Team," which won 32 titles, including all but six from 1955 to 1989 and 13 in a row from 1976 to 1989. Moscow teams won every title in the league's existence. CSKA was able to pull off such a long run of dominance because during the Soviet era, the entire CSKA organization was a functioning division of the Soviet Armed Forces via the Ministry of Defence. As all able-bodied Soviet males had to serve in the military, the team was able to draft the best young hockey players in the Soviet Union onto the team. All players were commissioned officers in the Soviet Army. There was a substantial overlap between the rosters of the Red Army Team and the Soviet national team, which was one factor behind the Soviets' near-absolute dominance of international hockey from the 1950s through the early 1990s. By the late 1980s, however, the long run of Red Army dominance caused a significant dropoff in attendance throughout the league.
FC Spartak Moscow is a Russian professional football club from Moscow. Having won 12 Soviet championships and a record 10 Russian championships, it is the country's most successful club. They have also won a record 10 Soviet Cups, 3 Russian Cups and one Russian Super Cup. Spartak have also reached the semi-finals of all three European club competitions.
Vsevolod Mikhailovich Bobrov was a Soviet athlete, who excelled in football, bandy and ice hockey. He is considered one of the best Russians ever in each of those sports.
Viktor Vasilyevich Tikhonov was a Soviet ice hockey player and coach. Tikhonov was a defenceman with VVS Moscow and Dynamo Moscow from 1949 to 1963, winning four national championships. He was the coach of the Soviet team when it was the dominant team in the world, winning eight World Championship gold medals, as well as Olympic gold in 1984, 1988, and 1992. Tikhonov also led CSKA Moscow to twelve consecutive league championships. He was named to the IIHF Hall of Fame as a builder in 1998.
Yuri Alexeyevich Khmylev is a Russian former professional ice hockey player. Khmylev played 11 seasons in his native Russia for Krylya Sovetov before being selected as a 27-year-old in the 5th round, 108th overall, of the 1992 NHL Entry Draft by the Buffalo Sabres.
The Flyers–Red Army game was a famous international ice hockey game played on January 11, 1976, between the Philadelphia Flyers of the North America-based National Hockey League (NHL), and HC CSKA Moscow of the Soviet Union.
Sergei Alekseevich Kapustin was an ice hockey player who played in the Soviet Hockey League. He played for HC CSKA Moscow, Krylya Sovetov Moscow, and HC Spartak Moscow.
Vyacheslav Mikhailovich Anisin is a Russian retired professional ice hockey player.
Alexander Konstantinovich Pashkov is a retired ice hockey player who played in the Soviet Hockey League. He played for HC Dynamo Moscow, HC Lokomotiv Moscow, HC CSKA Moscow, and Krylya Sovetov Moscow. He was inducted into the Russian and Soviet Hockey Hall of Fame in 1978. He is a recipient of the Medal "For Labour Valour".
The 1941 Soviet Top League was cancelled due to World War II. The last matches were played on June 24.
Statistics of Soviet Top League for the 1976 season.
The KHL's Bobrov Division was formed in 2008 as part of the league's inauguration and is part of the Western conference since the second season of KHL when the conferences were established. It is one of 4 divisions. It is named in honor of Vsevolod Bobrov; storied ice hockey gold medalist for the Soviet Union and former CSKA and VVS player.
The Junior Hockey League (MHL), sometimes translated as the Minor or Youth Hockey League, is a major junior ice hockey league in Eurasia, founded in 2009. It currently consists of 33 teams from 4 countries. Currently, all teams but one are subsidiaries for their respective KHL or VHL professional counterparts. A player's age cannot be older than 20. The Kharlamov Cup, named after star ice hockey player Valeri Kharlamov, is awarded annually as the Ice Hockey Federation of Russia's official Junior Championship, following a 16-team playoff at the end of the regular season.
VVS Moscow was a Soviet sports club representing the Soviet Air Force. Among the sports the club participated in were football, ice hockey, basketball, and volleyball. They won the Soviet national basketball league championship in 1952, as well as the Soviet national volleyball league championship in 1952, and the Soviet national ice hockey league championship three times, in the years 1951, 1952, and 1953.
HC Krylya Sovetov is a professional ice hockey team based in Moscow, Russia. The team played in the top divisions of Soviet and Russian hockey.
The 1959–60 Soviet Championship League season was the 14th season of the Soviet Championship League, the top level of ice hockey in the Soviet Union. Eighteen teams participated in the league, and CSKA Moscow won the championship.
The Soviet Cup was the national ice hockey cup competition in the Soviet Union. It was contested on-and-off from 1951-1989.
The 1988–89 Soviet League Cup was the 21st and final edition of the Soviet Cup ice hockey tournament. Unlike previous editions, the 1989 competition was held as a League Cup, with only the 10 best teams from the Soviet Championship League being eligible to participate. Krylya Sovetov Moscow won the cup for the third time in their history. Six teams participated in the preliminary round, with Dynamo Moscow, Krylya Sovetov Moscow, CSKA Moscow, and Khimik Voskresensk receiving byes until the knockout round.
| Soviet Championship League|
International Hockey League