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World Cup Game Recap

Team North America defeats Team Sweden in overtime

Swedes advance to semifinals; North Americans need loss by Team Russia

by Dan Rosen @drosennhl / Senior Writer

TORONTO -- Team North America inched closer to the semifinals of the World Cup of Hockey 2016 with a 4-3 overtime win against Team Sweden in the last preliminary round game for each team at Air Canada Centre on Wednesday.

Team Sweden won Group B and advanced into the semifinals because of the one point it earned with the overtime loss. It will play Team Europe, which finished second in Group A after losing to Team Canada 4-1 on Wednesday.

The other semifinal berth from Group B will go to Team North America or Team Russia.

It will be Team North America if Team Finland defeats Team Russia on Thursday. A win by Team Russia would put it in the semifinals and eliminate Team North America based on the head-to-head tiebreaker (Team Russia defeated Team North America 4-3 on Monday).

"We entertained, and we'd like a chance to continue that," Team North America coach Todd McLellan said. "But it's out of our control."

Nathan MacKinnon scored the game-winning goal at 4:11 of overtime. Auston Matthews, Vincent Trocheck and Johnny Gaudreau scored in the first period, and goalie John Gibson made 35 saves.

Video: NAT@SWE: Speedy Gaudreau scores on breakaway

Team Sweden goalie Henrik Lundqvist made 45 saves, and Filip Forsberg, Nicklas Backstrom and Patrik Berglund scored. Berglund's goal at 6:50 of the third period tied the game 3-3.

"They won the game, but at the end of the day we won the group and that's what we're going to be happy about," Team Sweden defenseman Erik Karlsson said.

Team North America scored twice in the first 95 seconds and held a 9-1 advantage in shots on goal through the first 4:29.

Connor McDavid's rush through all five Team Sweden skaters 20 seconds into the game created the possession that led to Matthews' second goal of the tournament 10 seconds later, giving Team North America a 1-0 lead.


Team North America forwards Connor McDavid and Jack Eichel achieved the top speed (24 mph) during the game.


Gaudreau was given a penalty shot 26 seconds later after getting hooked from behind on a breakaway by Karlsson; Gaudreau shot high and wide.

Trocheck scored at 1:35 to give Team North America a 2-0 lead.

Team Sweden made it 2-1 on Forsberg's shot from the right circle that hit off of Gibson as it went into the net at 8:24. Gaudreau responded with a breakaway goal at 13:57, and Backstrom answered for Team Sweden at 16:28 to make it 3-2.

"Obviously they caught us on our heels there pretty quick, and I think it was good for us to go down right away," Karlsson said. "We had to realize we had to play a better game in order to give ourselves a chance to win. We put ourselves in that position. We evolved our game more than they did throughout the 60 minutes and that's why we won the group."

Video: NAT@SWE: Berglund tips in Karlsson's shot


Goal of the Game:

MacKinnon's game-winner was like a play you'd see at the end of a practice. He was alone in front of Lundqvist when he got the puck and made a series of quick stickhandling moves. Lundqvist swung out his stick to try to swipe the puck away from him but missed. MacKinnon dragged the puck to his backhand, Lundqvist's stick came out of his hands, and MacKinnon roofed it into the net.

Video: NAT@SWE: MacKinnon shows off silky mitts on OT winner


Save of the Game:

Fifteen seconds before MacKinnon scored, Gibson came up with a game-saving stop on Daniel Sedin, who was sprung for what was essentially a red-line-in breakaway. Gibson stopped Sedin's attempt with his pad.

Video: NAT@SWE: Gibson makes huge pad stop on D. Sedin in OT


Unsung Moment of the Game:

Team North America kept the game tied 3-3 with McDavid in the penalty box for holding Anton Stralman at 15:34 of the third period. Team Sweden had three shots on goal during the power play, but Gibson stopped them all.


Highlight of the Game:

McDavid got the puck in the defensive zone on the first shift of the game and knifed up the middle of the ice. He blew past Team Sweden's three forwards and slipped between defensemen Stralman and Victor Hedman to generate a scoring chance that led to another five seconds later and a rebound goal for Matthews.

Video: NAT@SWE: Matthews scores 30 seconds into game


They Said It:

"Dave Tippett has coached probably more games than probably the rest of our staff put together, and we have coaches that have been around for a while, but we became fans. I was standing on the bench, 'No, no, no,' and then 'Go, go, go.' It was just going back and forth, the energy in the building and the passion with the fans, the players. I've seen a lot of excited players, but that bench was very excited. It was a lot of fun." -- Team North America coach Todd McLellan

"Wake the [bleep] up. Those first two minutes there, that was probably the most embarrassing part that I've ever been a part of on a team. They did it all. They had three breakaways, a penalty shot, a penalty called with them against us, two goals in the net. It gave us kind of a slap in the face, and I think that even though we didn't say those words to each other, it kind of made us say them to ourselves, look ourselves in the mirror realizing we need to wake up." -- Team Sweden defenseman Erik Karlsson

Video: NAT@SWE: Gibson denies D. Sedin in series of saves


Need to Know:

Team North America goalie Matt Murray was scratched because of a sore right thumb. He started the previous two games. ... Lundqvist made 81 saves in two games on back-to-back days after missing the first game of the tournament because he was ill.


What's Next:

Team North America: Will advance to the semifinals if Team Finland defeats Team Russia on Thursday, and would play Team Canada, which won Group A.

Team Sweden: Will play Team Europe in the semifinals on Saturday or Sunday.

Video: MacKinnon helps Team North America top Sweden in OT

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