The Soviet Union iced arguably the best team in its history en route to the gold medal. The famous Central Red Army First Five of Larionov, Makarov, Krutov, Fetisov and Kasatonov was in its prime and legendary goalie Vladislav Tretiak made his final international appearance.
The result was one of the most one-side tournaments in modern times. The Soviets recorded a perfect 7-0 record, outscoring their opponents 48-5 and allowing only one goal in the medal round. Nikolai Drozdetsky, a talented winger from Leningrad, upstaged his Moscow colleagues by scoring 10 goals in seven games for the Olympic champs.
Czechoslovakia, which lost 2-0 to the Soviets on closing day, claimed the silver medal and Sweden the bronze. Dave King's Canadian team placed fourth, failing to score a single goal in three medal round games. Canada defeated the defending Olympic champions from the United States 4-2 in the first game of the tournament, and ran up four straight wins before losing to Czechoslovakia in the final game of its first-round schedule.
West Germany narrowly missed qualifying for the medal round. They were led by giant centre Erich Kuhnhackl who topped the tournament in scoring with eight goals and 14 points. Despite matching Sweden's seven points in the preliminary round, the West Germans were sidelined because the former registered a better goals differential.