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**I wonder if Detroit should keep close tabs on Sebastian Wraneschitz. If not for an unbelievable performance in net, Sweden may have been in double digit scoring.
After a dominating performance
against the Czech Republic, Sweden faced off against Austria. It felt like this could be a double digit goal fest. Sweden led 1-0 after the first period, but outshot the Austrian squad 22 - 1. Johansson had the primary assist on Sweden’s lone power play tally. The 6’ left shot defenseman looks very comfortable with the puck. He joins the rush, moves the puck well at the point, and also showed some grit in board battles during Austria’s limited offensive zone attack.
Lucas Raymond didn’t show up on the score card in the first, but he was all over the offensive zone. He skates with the puck, making shifty moves and getting off quick shots. The play by play compared his style to Mitch Marner. He looked really good. Soderblom continues his “Elmer the Barbarian” type dominance. He holds onto the puck, but will skate it behind the net and cause fits for the defense. He uses his long stick to back up defenders and is able to make nice passes for attempts. He had multiple shots in tight, and continues to garner the attention of the commentators.
For the second period, Niederbach looks really good on faceoffs. Won 9 of 12 against Czech and seems very comfortable. Sweden scores (Niederbach’s skate) off of a nice Soderstrom point shot. Soderblom screen was excellent, got a Holmstrom reference from the Play by Play. Throughout the game, Soderblom is just all over the O zone. His puck handling and strength are so impressive. This was a 6th round pick in 2019. You never know who’s going to blossom and be the 1 to 3 NHL caliber players each draft will tend to yield (3 is considered VERY good).
Raymond down HARD at 10:30 into the boards. Face first into the boards on an attempted reverse hit. Looks like a leg or back also messed up. I’d be fine if they decide to sit him for the rest of the game as precautionary. Here’s hoping it’s nothing too serious (I always worry about ACL/MCL when the leg looks awkward. (Came back in the third - phew)
Berglund gathers 2nd assist on Gunler goal at 10:57. Good work in the neutral zone, but what a snipe from Gunler. Sweden only up 3-0 with 47 shots on goal after two. HUGE props to Austrian goal tender Sebastian Wraneschitz. This kid is locked in, should get a lot of love going into the 2021 draft.
Good to see Raymond back out for the third. At 3:45 Sweden has outshot Austria 6-0 this period and 53-5 for the game. Against a lesser goalie this would be a blowout. Austria gets their first shot of the period and 6th of the game at 4:57. Austria has faced more than 120 shots in just 2 games.
At 6:40 Niederbach made a fantastic play on the boards, stripping the puck after falling. Set up a nice possession for Sweden. At 11:55 Niederbach with another nice drive to the net. Soderblom just missed on a beautiful shot (pipe ringer). The chemistry with Niederbach and Soderblom is really encouraging to see.
At 11:23 Raymond is finally rewarded for his hard work. Found his way to the net, stick on the ice, and Holtz made a fantastic pass right on the tape. Raymond finds space even in a crowd, not afraid to get to the front of the net. Very nice to see.
With just 5 seconds to go, Soderblom rang the pipe one more time for good measure. His play, along with Niederbach, was a lot of fun to watch. More often than not, the type of effort and skill they displayed would end up on the scorecard.
Here is the gamecenter
link. The imbalance on puck possession and shots on goal is absolutely mind blowing. Full marks to Austria for facing the interviews with dignity and keeping at it. It is not fun to be on that side of the play. Mercifully, no teams will be displaced from Group A this year. Just put this one in the back window and move on.
Just for reference, here are the individual Red Wings prospects player pages from “elite prospects” if you want to take another look.
#18 (this year’s top pick for Detroit) listed at 5’10” and a right shot/right winger
#16 listed at 5’11” right shot centerman/winger
#25 - 6’8” left shot winger
#9 - 6’0” left shot Defense
#7 6’2” right shot defense