World Cup of Hockey 2016 Preview: Team Sweden

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This weekend, the 2016 World Cup of Hockey will begin, bringing with it the biggest superstars in the National Hockey League.  Starting September 17 in Toronto, eight teams will vie for the championship in a tournament not played since 2004.  Let’s take a look at the chances for Team Sweden.

by Bryan Vickroy

Of all teams involved, Sweden might be the hardest to score against.  Boasting arguably the world’s best defensive corps, and a gold and silver medal winning goalie in net, this is a team that can also score goals.  This depth led to silver at Sochi, and this team could be even better.  If all goes well, they will get their chance at revenge against Canada, knocking them off on the frozen Canadian soil.

WCOH History

1996 WCOH:  4th Place

2004 WCOH:  5th Place

Team Sweden hockey

Potential Lines

Left Wing                                    Center                                           Right Wing
Daniel Sedin (Van)                   Henrik Sedin (VAN)                   Loui Eriksson (VAN)
Filip Forsberg (NSH)               Nicklas Backstrom (WSH)        Patric Hornqvist (PIT)
Gabriel Landeskog (COL)       Mikael Backlud (CAL)                Carl Soderberg (COL)
Jakob Silfverberg (ANA)         Marcus Kruger (CHI)                 Carl Hagelin (PIT)
Left Defenseman                                  Right Defenseman
Niklas Hjalmarsson (CHI)                 Erik Karlsson (OTT)
Hampus Lindholm (ANA)                 Oliver Ekman-Larsson (ARI)
Victor Hedman (TB)                           Anton Stralman (TB)
Mattias Ekholm (NSH)
Goalies
Henrik Lundqvist (NYR)
Jhonas Enroth (TOR)
Jacob Markstrom (VAN)

Best Case Scenario

Even if the team is average, they get through the group round.  If everything is clicking, they should dominate their group, and cruise easily into the championship, where they take that next skate stride and win the title.

Worst Case Scenario

Henrik Lundqvist struggles in net, and the usually steady team is unable to bounce back.  Having a target on their back as a favorite, other teams step up their play and take points away from the Swedes.  Parity in the group leads to Sweden being knocked out in round robin play.

Team MVP:  Victor Hedman

Breakout Star:  Filip Forsberg

Leading Scorer:  Loui Eriksson

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