World Juniors 2016: Sweden 1-0 USA

Before the game between USA and Sweden in the World Junior Hockey Championship 2016 it was clear that at least one streak was to be broken: Sweden had not lost a game in the group phase of the tournament since 2006, but they had not defeated team USA since 1996. Should the winning streak be broken or the curse lifted?

Alexander Nylander gave us the answer

In Sweden’s first game against Switzerland, the “Three Crowns” won by 8-3 but it was a bitter-sweet victory since the team’s star forward, William Nylander got injured due to a checking to the head. He did not participate against USA. However, his younger brother, Alexander, played a decisive role in big brother’s absence.

In the first period, both teams got to play with the man advantage a few times, without scoring. USA had an advantage in puck possession in the game, but failed to convert much thanks to Linus Söderström i the Swedish net. In the beginning of the second period, Alexander Nylander got a breakaway and put the puck up high behind USA’s goalie Alex Nedeljkovic No more goals were scored even though USA often established high pressure against the Swedish net.

Sweden at the top of group A

The Swedish victory means that they are at the top of group A after two rounds. Three Crowns will continue the tournament by facing nordic rivals Denmark December 30 and Canada at New Years Eve.

Sweden 6p
USA 3p
Canada 3p
Denmark 3p
Switzerland 0p

The curse is lifted

Below is all results between Sweden and USA in the World Juniors since 1998:

2015: 1-0 (group stage)
2013: 1–3 (final)
2011: 2–4 (bronze game)
2010: 2–5 (semifinal)
2007: 1–2 (bronze game)
2006: 2–3 (group stage)
2005: 2–8 (quarterfinal)
2003: 3–4 (group stage)
2002: 2–3 (game for 5th place)
2001: 2–2 (group stage)
2000: 1–3 (quarterfinal)
2000: 1–3 (group stage)
1998: 3–4 (game for 5th place)

Results from group B

Two rival matchups have been played and group B: Finland lost a two goal lead against Russia in seven minutes, losing by 6-4. Czech Republic defeated Slovakia 2-0. After two rounds, Russia tops the group:

Russia 5p
Czech Republic 4p
Finland 3p
Slovakia 3p
Belarus 0p

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