IIHF Top World Championship Stories

To commemorate the centennial anniversary of the IIHF World Championship (as the 1920 Olympics served as the first such championship) and the thirtieth anniversary of the IIHF Women’s World Championship, both of which were unfortunately cancelled due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, the International Ice Hockey Federation instead unveiled their lists of the Top 100 Men’s and Top 30 Women’s Stories, highlighting the top moments from their respective World Championships.

While the women’s list was revealed moment by moment, the men’s highlights were released over a series of ten themed features, including “Epic Goals,” “Legendary Games,” “Events That Shocked The World” and “Moments That Won It All” – these moments are listed below in chronological order. While many of these stories took place off the ice, and many took place in lower rungs of international hockey, many stories are not tied to the International Hockey Lineal Championship. But like the 100 Top Stories Of The Century list the IIHF released in 2008, any games in which the IHLC was up for grabs are highlighted in bold.


01. Ice hockey debuts at the Olympic Games
🇨🇦 CAN 2-0 USA 🇺🇸 – 25 Apr 1920 – OG – Antwerp 🇧🇪

02. Canada’s Harry Watson racks up 36 goals in 5 games
🇨🇦 CAN 30-0 TCH 🇨🇿 – 28 Jan 1924 – OG – Chamonix 🇫🇷
🇨🇦 CAN 22-0 SWE 🇸🇪 – 29 Jan 1924 – OG – Chamonix 🇫🇷
🇨🇦 CAN 33-0 SUI 🇨🇭 – 30 Jan 1924 – OG – Chamonix 🇫🇷
🇨🇦 CAN 19-2 GBR 🇬🇧 – 01 Feb 1924 – OG – Chamonix 🇫🇷
🇨🇦 CAN 6-1 USA 🇺🇸 – 03 Feb 1924 – OG – Chamonix 🇫🇷

03. First annual World Championship held in 1930

04. USA wins its first IIHF World Championship
🇺🇸 USA 2-1 CAN 🇨🇦 (OT) – 26 Feb 1933 – WC – Prague 🇨🇿 🏅

05. Czechoslovakia wins gold at first post-war World Championship
06. After Worlds gold, Czechoslovakia’s Jaroslav Drobný wins Wimbledon
07. Generation lost as Czechoslovak team is jailed for treason

08. IIHF Worlds finale held in outdoor stadium in front of 50,000
09. Soviets topple Canada for gold in first IIHF Worlds appearance

🇷🇺 URS 7-2 CAN 🇨🇦 – 07 Mar 1954 – WC – Stockholm 🇸🇪

10. Soviet Vsevolod Bobrov competes at Winter and Summer Olympic Games in hockey and football
🇷🇺 URS 7-2 CAN 🇨🇦 – 07 Mar 1954 – WC – Stockholm 🇸🇪
🇷🇺 URS 2-0 CAN 🇨🇦 – 04 Feb 1956 – OG – Cortina d’Ampezzo 🇮🇹

11. Canada’s Penticton Vees reclaim gold medal
🇨🇦 CAN 5-0 URS 🇷🇺 – 06 Mar 1955 – WC – Krefeld 🇩🇪

12. Canada’s Connie Broden wins gold at Worlds, then the Stanley Cup a month later
🇨🇦 CAN 4-2 URS 🇷🇺 – 09 Mar 1958 – WC – Oslo 🇳🇴

13. The IIHF expands the World Championships to A, B and C pools

14. Amateur era comes to a close as Trail Smoke Eaters take home gold
🇨🇦 CAN 5-1 URS 🇷🇺 – 12 Mar 1961 – WC – Geneva 🇨🇭

15. Nisse Nilsson’s empty netter seals Tre Kronor’s first win over Canada
🇸🇪 SWE 5-3 CAN 🇨🇦 – 13 Mar 1962 – WC – Colorado Springs 🇺🇸

16. Czechoslovakia win emotional games vs the Soviets
🇨🇿 TCH 4-3 URS 🇷🇺 – 28 Mar 1969 – WC – Stockholm 🇸🇪

17. The IIHF allows bodychecking in all three zones
18. Anti-Doping controls introduced

19. Protesting amateur rules, Canada leaves international hockey
🇨🇦 CAN 2-1 TCH 🇨🇿 – 04 Jan 1970 – EX – Ottawa 🇨🇦

20. Alexander Maltsev slaloms to Soviets 8th straight gold
21. Goalies play their final game without a mask
22. Czechoslovakia ends Soviet streak of nine straight gold medals
23. Russia’s Boris Mikhailov and Vladimir Petrov score 10 points each vs. Poland
24. Poland takes down the unbeatable Red Machine
25. Canada returns to the international stage after seven years

26. The Soviet Union avenges Olympic loss against Sweden in 13-1 win
🇷🇺 URS 13-1 SWE 🇸🇪 – 24 Apr 1981 – WC – Gothenburg 🇸🇪

27. Wayne Gretzky makes his only World Championship appearance

28. Soviet legend and star goaltender Vladislav Tretyak retires at age 32
🇨🇿 TCH 7-2 URS 🇷🇺 – 12 Apr 1984 – SC – Karlstad 🇸🇪

29. Vezina trophy winner Pelle Lindbergh dies in a car crash
30. West Germany’s Miroslav Sikora’s eligibility overturns preliminary round standings

31. Tomas Sandström helps Tre Kronor to first title in 25 years
32. Amid the drama of 1987 Worlds, Sweden picks up first gold in 25 years

🇷🇺 URS 2-2 SWE 🇸🇪 – 01 May 1987 – WC – Vienna 🇦🇹

33. Alexander Mogilny becomes first Soviet-era player to defect to the NHL
34. Igor Larionov revolts against Soviet system, head coach
35. Vladislav Tretyak first European-born player inducted into Hockey Hall of Fame
36. Germany’s Udo Kiessling retires after an incredible career that includes a record 119 World Championship Games

37. Sweden’s Mats Sundin ends the Soviet Union’s reign
🇸🇪 SWE 2-1 URS 🇷🇺 – 04 May 1991 – WC – Turku 🇫🇮

38. Luc Robitaille, Canada’s hero, secures country’s first gold in 33 years
🇨🇦 CAN 2-1 FIN 🇫🇮 (SO) – 08 May 1994 – WC – Assago 🇮🇹 🏅

39. Peter Šťastný helps Slovakia rise to the top pool
40. France beats Canada for the first time in history

41. Ville Peltonen puts game on ice for Finnish gold
42. “Tupu,” “Hupu” & “Lupu” take Finland to the Top of the World

🇫🇮 FIN 4-1 SWE 🇸🇪 – 07 May 1995 – WC – Stockholm 🇸🇪 🏅

43. Two-line passes are now allowed, forever changing the game

44. Jan Hlaváč scores historic first Worlds golden goal for Czechs
🇨🇿 CZE 1-4 (1-0 OT) FIN 🇫🇮 – 16 May 1999 – WC – Lillehammer 🇳🇴 🏅

45. Despite having 14 NHL stars, Russia falls to 11th place on home ice

46. Recently separated Czech Republic and Slovakia meet in Worlds final
🇨🇿 CZE 5-3 SVK 🇸🇰 – 14 May 2000 – WC – Saint Petersburg 🇷🇺 🏅

47. David Moravec golden goal gives Czechs three-peat
48. Czechs win three consecutive World Championships
49. David Moravec’s OT gold medal winner solidifies Czech dominance

🇨🇿 CZE 3-2 FIN 🇫🇮 (OT) – 13 May 2001 – WC – Hanover 🇩🇪 🏅

50. Peter Bondra’s bomb secures gold for Slovakia
🇸🇰 SVK 4-3 RUS 🇷🇺 – 11 May 2002 – WC – Gothenburg 🇸🇪 🏅

51. Denmark ties Canada, sends USA to relegation
52. Sweden stages one of the greatest comebacks in Worlds history

53. Canada’s gold medal decided by video review
🇨🇦 CAN 3-2 SWE 🇸🇪 (OT) – 11 May 2003 – WC – Helsinki 🇫🇮 🏅

54. The IIHF implements a World Ranking system

55. Scott Niedermayer joins Triple Gold Club with Worlds gold
56. Patrice Bergeron wins Worlds gold before World Junior gold

🇨🇦 CAN 5-3 SWE 🇸🇪 – 09 May 2004 – WC – Prague 🇨🇿 🏅

57. IIHF cracks down on obstruction, opening up the game

58. Sweden makes history with Olympic and World Championship gold
🇸🇪 SWE 3-2 FIN 🇫🇮 – 26 Feb 2006 – OG – Turin 🇮🇹 🏅
🇸🇪 SWE 4-0 CZE 🇨🇿 – 21 May 2006 – WC – Rīga 🇱🇻 🏅

59. 18-year-old Sidney Crosby earns IIHF Worlds scoring title
🇸🇪 SWE 5-4 CAN 🇨🇦 – 20 May 2006 – WC – Rīga 🇱🇻

60. Three-point system introduced

61. Canada’s Rick Nash scores a beauty against Finns
🇨🇦 CAN 4-2 FIN 🇫🇮 – 13 May 2007 – WC – Moscow 🇷🇺 🏅

62. Hockey giants Canada host World Championship for first time

63. Tic-Tac-GOAL for Sergei Fyodorov
🇷🇺 RUS 4-0 FIN 🇫🇮 – 16 May 2008 – WC – Québec 🇨🇦

64. Russia defeats Canada in wild 6-5 finale
65. Ilya Kovalchuk’s OT winner beats Canada, in Canada
🇷🇺 RUS 5-4 CAN 🇨🇦 (OT) – 18 May 2008 – WC – Québec 🇨🇦 🏅

66. Belarus’ Sergei Demagin scores fastest goal in Worlds history, five seconds in!
67. Felix Schütz scores OT winner in front of largest crowd in Worlds history
68. Peter Regin makes a Danish dangle
69. Stefan Lassen nets the overtime winner for Denmark vs. USA
70. Norway’s Mathis Olimb pulls a Forsberg
71. Jan Marek clutch in Quarterfinal and Semifinal shootouts
72. Karel Rachůnek’s equalizer with seven seconds to go
73. Underdog Czechs defeat Russia to pick up their sixth Worlds gold
74. Germany wins their first World Championship game vs Russia 2-0

75. Alexei Kaigorodov sneaks one through against Canada
🇷🇺 RUS 2-1 CAN 🇨🇦 – 12 May 2011 – WC – Bratislava 🇸🇰

76. Finland’s Mikael Granlund scores “The Goal”
🇫🇮 FIN 3-0 RUS 🇷🇺 – 13 May 2011 – WC – Bratislava 🇸🇰

77. Players, coaches from several countries perish in Lokomotiv Yaroslavl plane crash

78. Miro’s shorty downs Czechs in Semis
🇸🇰 SVK 3-1 CZE 🇨🇿 – 19 May 2012 – WC – Helsinki 🇫🇮

79. Stockholm sets World Championship hosting record
80. Petri Kontiola picks one out of the air

81. Switzerland heads to final thanks to Reto Suri
🇨🇭 SUI 3-2 CAN 🇨🇦 (SO) – 05 May 2013 – WC – Stockholm 🇸🇪

82. France beats Russia for first time ever
83. Alex Galchenyuk helps USA capture Bronze in shootout
84. Following semi-final incident, two coaches banned from medal games
85. The IIHF implements a two-referee system
86. Alexei Kalyuzhny secures Belarus’ first ever win against the USA
87. Kaspars Daugaviņš first to score consecutive overtime goals
88. 43-year-old Jaromír Jágr scores his final international goal

89. Sidney Crosby joins the Triple Gold Club
90. Claude Giroux back to Tyler Seguin for Canada

🇨🇦 CAN 6-1 RUS 🇷🇺 – 17 May 2015 – WC – Prague 🇨🇿 🏅

91. 18-year-old Patrik Laine scores first goal on the way to MVP campaign
92. Hungary gets first World Championship win in 77 years

93. Connor McDavid scores his only goal of 2016 Worlds… the gold-medal winner
🇨🇦 CAN 2-0 FIN 🇫🇮 – 22 May 2016 – WC – Moscow 🇷🇺 🏅

94. France bids adieu to Cristobal Huet, Laurent Meunier on home ice

95. Sweden wins back-to-back gold in shootout
🇸🇪 SWE 2-1 CAN 🇨🇦 (SO) – 21 May 2017 – WC – Cologne 🇩🇪 🏅

96. Sweden wins back-to-back gold in shootout
97. Underdogs Switzerland takes home a silver medal

🇸🇪 SWE 3-2 SUI 🇨🇭 (SO) – 20 May 2018 – WC – Copenhagen 🇩🇰 🏅

98. The IIHF adopts unlimited overtime, 3-on-3 hockey
99. Newly-promoted Great Britain and Italy both stay in top division

100. Slovakia is Finland’s lucky hosts as Finns capture gold again
🇫🇮 FIN 3-1 CAN 🇨🇦 – 26 May 2019 – WC – Bratislava 🇸🇰 🏅


01. Women’s hockey established in 1990
🇨🇦 CAN 5-2 USA 🇺🇸 – 25 Mar 1990 – WWC – Ottawa 🇨🇦 🏅

02. Women stand strong during tough year

03. Canada 2007 – best team ever?
🇨🇦 CAN 5-1 USA 🇺🇸 – 10 Apr 2007 – WWC – Winnipeg 🇨🇦 🏅

04. Angela James, Cammi Granato, Heaney inducted into IIHF Hall
05. U.S. threatens boycott

06. Finns close to gold, settle for silver
🇺🇸 USA 2-1 FIN 🇫🇮 (SO) – 14 Apr 2019 – WWC – Espoo 🇫🇮 🏅

07. Hayley Wickenheiser plays first game
🇨🇦 CAN 7-1 CHN 🇨🇳 – 11 Apr 1994 – WWC – Lake Placid 🇺🇸

08. Marie-Philip Poulin, Kendall Coyne make quick leap
09. Jenni Hiirikoski named Best Defenceman

10. Women’s Worlds heads to NHL arenas
🇨🇦 CAN 8-0 FIN 🇫🇮 – 05 Apr 2013 – WWC – Ottawa 🇨🇦

11. Sweden wins 2005 bronze to usher in golden era

12. 1987 Women’s Worlds transformational
🇨🇦 CAN 10-0 SUI 🇨🇭 – 21 Apr 1987 – WWT – North York 🇨🇦

13. Riikka Välilä un-retires after 12 years
14. Canada wins 37th straight
15. Swiss win first Women’s World medal
16. Cammi Granato retires top scorer
17. Women’s Worlds goes to 10 teams

18. USA finally breaks through
🇺🇸 USA 1-0 CAN 🇨🇦 (SO) – 09 Apr 2005 – WWC – Linköping 🇸🇪 🏅

19. Florence Schelling plays 28th straight
20. Russians use WW18 for Women’s World success
21. 1997 marks end of “early era”
22. IIHF invests additional $2 million in women’s hockey
23. Zuzana Tomčíková named MVP
24. Czechs move to the top
25. “Saint Kim” St-Pierre a special goalie
26. Guo Hong first star from Far East
27. Japan stuns Sweden in 2015
28. Julia Zorn first to skate and save

29. Nancy Drolet dramatics matched by Hilary Knight magic
🇨🇦 CAN 4-3 USA 🇺🇸 (OT) – 06 Apr 1997 – WWC – Kitchener 🇨🇦 🏅
🇨🇦 CAN 3-2 USA 🇺🇸 (OT) – 09 Apr 2000 – WWC – Mississauga 🇨🇦 🏅
🇺🇸 USA 3-2 CAN 🇨🇦 (OT) – 25 Apr 2011 – WWC – Zürich 🇨🇭 🏅
🇺🇸 USA 3-2 CAN 🇨🇦 (OT) – 07 Apr 2017 – WWC – Plymouth 🇺🇸 🏅

30. Women only officials