2010 Olympic Hockey Outlook: Team Sweden
Sweden is the fourth of an eight-part series previewing the upcoming Winter Olympics in Vancouver. Other team previews can be found here: Russia | Canada | USA | Czech Republic | Slovakia | Finland | Mexico (Satire)
Sweden is the defending gold medalist from the Turin games in 2006, and they will certainly be in the hunt to repeat. The Tre Kronor have been an impressive program for many years, despite being a small country in relation to some of the others.
This team also has a must-win mentality in Vancouver. Most likely, it will be a lot of players final Olympic games and the pressure will be on them to hold the gold medal a little longer.
They are another serious contender, alongside Canada and Russia for the championship.
C Henrik Zetterberg, Detroit Red Wings
LW Markus Naslund, New York Rangers
RW Daniel Alfredsson, Ottawa Senators
C Mats Sundin, Vancouver Canucks
LW Kristian Huselius, Columbus Blue Jackets
RW Peter Forsberg
C Henrik Sedin, Vancouver Canucks
LW Daniel Sedin, Vancouver Canucks
RW Johan Franzen, Detroit Red Wings
C Niklas Backstrom, Washington Capitals
LW Loui Eriksson, Dallas Stars
RW Tomas Holmstrom, Detroit Red Wings
The vast majority of the group that won gold in Turin returns for the 2010 games. Henrik Zetterberg will lead a veteran line flanked by high-profile scorer Daniel Alfredsson and Markus Naslund.
The second line is also made up of vastly experienced players. Forsberg and Sundin are most likely playing in their last Olympic games.
Line three will pit the skill of the Sedin twins alongside the grit of power-forward Johan Franzen. Neither of the Sedin twins are big-time goal scorers but the help of Franzen should show immediately.
The fourth line will showcase the future of Swedish hockey in Niklas Backstrom and Loui Eriksson. Both have had incredible years for their respective NHL clubs, and they will be joined by veteran Tomas Holmstrom.
Mikael Samuelsson, Detroit Red Wings; Samuel Pahlsson, Anaheim Ducks; Patrik Berglund, St. Louis Blues; Robert Nilsson, Edmonton Oilers
LD Nicklas Lidstrom, Detroit Red Wings
RD Mattias Ohlund, Vancouver Canucks
LD Niklas Kronwall, Detroit Red Wings
RD Kenny Jonsson, HC Rogle BK
LD Alexander Edler, Vancouver Canucks
RD Henrik Tallinder, Buffalo Sabres
The defense will once again be lead by world-class defenseman Niklas Lidstrom, who could possibly be playing in his final Olympics. The top four are all veterans that have played in many international tournaments.
Edler and Tallinder are the only two here that really have not played together in the past. Jonsson may end up paired with Lidstrom so that Ohlund and Kronwall can compliment each other.
Victor Hedman, MoDo HC; Tobias Enstrom, Atlanta Thrashers; Anton Stralman, Toronto Maple Leafs
G Henrik Lundqvist, New York Rangers
G Jakob Markstrom, Brynas IF
Lundqvist is the starter for sure and he was the goalie when they won the gold medal in 2006. He is one of the best in the world and will be a major reason for Sweden's success in Vancouver. Markstrom is a young phenom that has torn apart the SEL and deserves the backup role.
Mikael Tellqvist, Phoenix Coyotes
Bronze. Defeat the Czech Republic 4-0 in the Bronze medal game.
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