WJC SF | Russia (5) – Sweden (4) OT

Arik Krause

Russia (2016 - Pres) Russia @ Sweden Sweden (1996 - Pres)

It’s going to be heartbreak for one of these teams, both powerhouses in the hockey world. However, both have struggled to win the big game at the WJC. Russia has 1 gold in the last 16 tournaments. Sweden is a shocking 52-0 in the last 13 years in the group stage. They also only have one gold medal to show for it.

It didn’t take long for Sweden to get on the board. They would solve 17-year old Askarov early. Rasmus Sandin, a Toronto Maple Leafs prospect would find the back of the net. Putting Sweden up 1-0, only 20 seconds into the game.

TSN on Twitter

Sweden isn’t messing around… less than 20 seconds into the game and Rasmus Sandin claps one home! 😱 https://t.co/BxO6W8ACYZ

It’s important in a game like this that you don’t fall behind big early, Russia would answer right back a couple of minutes later, tying the game.

TSN on Twitter

🇷🇺 Russia doesn’t wait around to fall behind even more. Soon after the Swedes open the scoring, Vegas 2nd rounder Ivan Morozov knocks it through. https://t.co/55NM133pfs

Sweden’s best forward and arguable best player Nils Höglander gets 5-minutes and game misconduct for this hit to the head. It was a heated talking point during the intermission, as the Russian player simply had an ice pack on his head for a couple of minutes and was back on the ice.

TSN on Twitter

Nils Höglander gets 5 minutes and a game misconduct for this play 😬 Is this the end of the creative Swede’s electric tournament? https://t.co/ZVtmSxBSed

Just because you get a golden opportunity, doesn’t mean you don’t have to work to seize it. The Russians made Sweden pay quickly for the Höglander major, blasting one home on the powerplay and grabbing a 2-1 lead.

TSN on Twitter

Minutes after the Höglander ejection, 🇷🇺 Russia takes the lead! https://t.co/QXek69AkT6

In such an important game, you really can’t afford to give any free opportunities over to the other team. Sweden’s netminder, trying to play the puck, coughs it up to Sokolov, who wouldn’t miss and give the Russians an early 3-1 lead.

TSN on Twitter

Another goalie error at the World Juniors leads to a 3-1 Russian lead! 🇷🇺 https://t.co/BHxaiBvfOw

Finally to close out a wild first period, probably the best period of the tournament so far from a fan perspective. Sweden would cut the Russian lead in half, bringing the score to 3-2 going into the first intermission.

TSN on Twitter

Tournament’s leading scorer 🇸🇪 Samuel Fagemo tacks on another and cuts the Russian lead to 3-2! https://t.co/OkVKKSMaJR

Sweden wouldn’t go quietly into the night, as once again Rasmus Sandin would find the back of the Russian net, scoring his second goal of the game. He would eventually end the game with 4 points.

TSN on Twitter

Leafs prospect Rasmus Sandin claps home his 2nd of the game for Sweden! 🇸🇪 We’re tied. https://t.co/kIpJjIDOMn

Sweden remained to be simply punishing from the point in this game, as they would break the tie in the third period. Sweden’s 4th goal on 20 shots would chase Askarov as the Russians once again, have no issue pulling goalies when they feel like they have seen enough.

TSN on Twitter

Leafs prospect Rasmus Sandin claps home his 2nd of the game for Sweden! 🇸🇪 We’re tied. https://t.co/kIpJjIDOMn

Just as it looked like Sweden was going to move onto the gold medal game, stopping the last 23 shots. Yegor Sokolov also gets his second of the game, tying the game at 4 and sending us to overtime.

TSN on Twitter

Yegor Sokolov snipes the tying goal. 😯😯 We’re in for a crazy finish! https://t.co/8qhPFQ2AQP

Thankfully this tournament, we get longer 3-on-3 overtimes as the tournament tries to shift away from important games ending in the shootout.

Sweden absolutely dominated the first half of the 3-on-3 overtime, barely letting the Russians touch the puck. However, not really generating any chance for themselves. It took Russia one possession with the puck, after a terrible line change from Sweden. Ivan Morozov would cut across the slot and rip one low glove, ending the game and sending the Russians off to the gold medal game.

TSN on Twitter

The goal that secures either a gold or silver medal for the Russians! https://t.co/1QsRX9jkfZ

Powerplay and Shots

Russia (2016 - Pres)2/7 PP Sweden (1996 - Pres)3/4 PP

Russia (2016 - Pres)44 shots Sweden (1996 - Pres)25 shots

Players of the Game

Russia (2016 - Pres)– Yegor Sokolov

 Sweden (1996 - Pres)– Rasmus Sandin

Are you looking for more Russian content? Be sure to follow Arik on Twitter as he will providing you with Russia content throughout the whole WJC! HERE.

Photo Credit: Russiahockey/Twitter

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