Ranking the Best Hockey Countries of the Modern Era

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Ranking the Best Hockey Countries of the Modern Era
David J. Phillip/Associated Press

Canada is coming off an impressive gold-medal performance at the 2014 Sochi Games, but is it the most dominant country in hockey's modern era? And where do teams like the United States, Russia, Sweden and Finland stack up?

To answer this question, we've gone through each team's record in modern tournaments featuring the best possible rosters: the 1996 and 2004 World Cups as well as the 1998, 2002, 2006, 2010 and 2014 Olympics.

Excluded are tournaments like the World Championships, which rarely include the best possible teams, Olympic Games that excluded NHL players and tournaments like the Canada Cup, which featured an intact Soviet Union.

To further narrow the focus, we have included only games played against international hockey's so-called "Big Eight" teams (Canada, Sweden, USA, Russia, Finland, Czech Republic, Slovakia and Switzerland). That means teams get no points for routing Latvia or Austria; only wins and losses against top competition are counted.

How do the teams stack up? Read on to see which countries have the best records in play featuring the top players in the world. 

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