Soviet Championship League

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).

Soviet Hockey Championship
Republic(s) Byelorussian SSR
Estonian SSR
Kazakh SSR
Latvian SSR
Lithuanian SSR
Russian SFSR
Ukrainian SSR
Relegation toSoviet Class A2
Soviet Class B
ChampionshipSoviet Hockey Championship
Associated Title(s)Soviet Cup
Most successful clubCSKA Moscow (32)


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.

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. Indeed, Moscow teams won every title in the league's existence.

Soviet League Champions

See also

Preceded by
Soviet Championship League
Succeeded by
International Hockey League
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