It was the game that everyone thought it would be. It turned out to be a Malkin masterclass but Sweden more than made up the numbers. After 30 minutes of the game, Sweden were winning 3-1 from punishing Russian penalties. It was the 36th minute of the game when Evgeni Malkin turned punisher and started a monumental swing of emphasis to the “away” team. The scoring had been opened by Ottawa Senators’ defenseman Erik Karlssen on a powerplay. Alexander Popov made amends for his penalty that resulted in the Swedish goal when he equalised from a Malkin assist. Another penalty was punished by Sweden and this time it was Henrik Zetterberg scored from a rebound. Johan Franzén scored on another powerplay at 9:36 of the second period to give Sweden a 3-1 lead and pour pressure on the Russian team.
Malkin’s tight angle finish on 36th minutes seemed to upset Sweden and they became more indisciplined in an already fractious game. Alexei Yemelin took full advantage of Franzén’s double roughing penalty and tied the game just before the end of the 2nd period. At this point there had already been 20 minutes of penalties and 5 of the 6 goals scored were from powerplay situations.
They got some momentum and then they scored right away in the third period. We can’t let them score five in a row. We need to stop the bleeding before it gets too big, and we didn’t do that today.
Sweden got off to a terrible start in the 3rd period when Alexander Perezhogin was alive to the puck richocheting off goalie Viktor Fasth‘s helmet and scoring. Shortly after this, Malkin squeezed the puck between Fasth’s legs to make it 5-3. Dmitri Kalinin nearly gave Sweden a life line when he was called for hitting Franzén in the face with his stick. He was immediately given a five plus twenty minute match penalty whilst Franzen lay bleeding on the ice. Sweden couldn’t make their 5 minute man advantage pay which left Malkin to punish them for their profligacy in front of the net. The final act of the game was Denis Denisov‘s slapshot to add to Sweden’s misery.
In the aftermath of the match, two Russian players are under review from the IIHF Disciplinary panel. Kalinin’s stick on Franzen, who was taken to hospital with a broken nose, and Yemelin’s slash on the unfortunate Franzen will be reviewed. Russia will play another rival next up in the form of the Czech Republic.