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Sergei was the first Soviet member of their national hockey team that the Soviet government allowed to play in the National Hockey League. Other players had either defected or had not been member of the national team before him. After playing in the Soviet Elite League for Soviet Wings, he was given permission to leave following the 1988-89 Soviet league season and joined the Flames in March 1989. His first game came on March 30, 1989 as member of the Calgary Flames.
While he would only last a few years in the NHL, he did pave the way for players such as Sergei Makarov, Vladimir Krutov and Igor Larionov, amongst many others, to also be allowed to ply their trade in the NHL. Sergei would spend his entire career with the Flames. Priakin was included on the 1989 Calgary team winning picture, and was awarded a Stanley Cup ring. He was the first Russian trained played to receive a Stanley Cup ring. Pryakhin played only 2 regular season games, and 1 playoff, so he was not eligible to be engraved on the Stanley Cup.
- Sergei Pryakhin's career stats at The Internet Hockey Database
- CNNSI article talking about Pryakhin's achievement
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