Nicklas Backstrom and William Nylander’s unmatched chemistry continued during their semifinal matchup against Finland, Saturday.
The Capitals first-line center tallied two assists while the Leafs forward had a goal and an assist in Sweden’s 4-1 victory. Backstrom was on the ice for three of Tre Kronor’s four goals.
1:49 into the game, Sweden got on the board after a set play off a faceoff. Backstrom won the puck directly back to defenseman Alexander Edler, who fired the puck past Finnish goaltender Harri Sateri.
The goal gave Sweden a 1-0 lead early.
— IIHF (@IIHFHockey) May 20, 2017
Backstrom got on the scoresheet once again, late in the second period. While on a powerplay, Backstrom found Nylander driving the center lane to give Sweden a 3-1 lead.
The two assists give Backstrom six points in four games since arriving in Germany last week. Sweden would go on to win 4-1 and will play Canada in the gold medal game Sunday.
“It feels good,” Backstrom said to Aftonbladet as translated by Magnus Caledin. “We felt a bit nervous before the game but we got things going in the second period. We got a couple of power plays, gained confidence and things got better and better.”
Backstrom is looking forward to Sweden’s matchup against Team Canada.
“It’s perfect. We’re underdogs,” Backstrom said. “It’s great. It never feels wrong to play Team Canada in a final. They’re a really skilled team, but so are we.”
Photo: Matt Zambonin
Photo: Matt Zambonin
Photo: Andre Ringuette
Photo: Jimmy Wixstrom/Aftonbladet
Additional reporting by Magnus Cadelin.
Headline photo: Jimmy Wixstrom/Aftonbladet
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